The Bayelsa State Chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) has dissociated itself from the electoral violence in Oweikorogha, Southern Ijaw Local Government Council of the state. Gunmen in military uniform were reported to have killed a leader of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) during the Presidential and National Assembly elections on 23 February 2019.
State Publicity Secretary of Bayelsa APC, Mr. Doifie Buokoribo, in a statement on Monday in Yenagoa dismissed insinuations by Governor Henry Seriake Dickson and the PDP in Bayelsa State that Seidougha Taribi was a victim of violence perpetrated by APC supporters. The APC challenged the picture painted by the Bayelsa State Government, saying nothing can be further from the truth.
In its account of the Oweikorogha incident, the APC said:
“On the day of election, materials were brought to Oweikorogha. PDP supporters led by Moses Taribi, Seidougha Taribi, Promise Elijah, Reginald Dei and others were fomenting trouble with the intent to destroy the electioneering materials or hijacking them for their party. APC supporters did all they could to allow voting to take place.
“While voting was on going, a certain Perebigha Azikwe of the PDP arrived the polling unit with a locally made pistol, and snatched the card reader. At that instance, the APC Ward 2 Agent, Deizigha ThankGod, approached the PDP loyalists to plead with them to return the card reader, but they refused. APC loyalists then insisted that voting could not continue. While they were concentrating on the other two units, PDP thugs led by Moses Taribi forcefully took away the remaining materials of that unit to Seidougha Taribi’s house and were thumb-printing in favour of the PDP. At that point, the voters sought for security intervention to secure the electoral materials. Soldiers arrived Oweikorogha, and stormed Seidogha Taribi’s house. There was an exchange of gunshots.
”The APC is concerned that houses of our members and their relations have been burnt down in the community and property looted. Our members are also being hunted for possible assassination.
”The party condemns this unnecessary insult in Oweikorogha. APC is the victim, not the aggressor.
”We call on the armed and security forces to restore law and order in Oweikorogha community. Our members and other peace-loving residents in Southern Ijaw need protection.”