S'COURT VERDICT: ANXIETY IN BAYELSA, AS GROUP RAISES ALARM OVER RALLY
Anxiety is building in Bayelsa State over a one million-man protest march being planned by Bayelsa youths in Yenagoa and Abuja. The rally had been slated to hold few days to the Supreme Court judgment on the Bayelsa State governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
Checks indicated that the proposed protest has polarized Bayelsa youths into pro and anti-government forces, with the latter accusing the former of bowing to pressures by officials of the Governor Henry Seriake Dickson to hijack the rally and use it to call on the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to arrest and prosecute former governor Timipre Sylva.
The Bayelsa Democratic Front (BDF), which raised the alarm said, it could trigger chaos in the state and disrupt the peace process in Niger Delta.
President of the group, Mr. Promise Okopebi in a statement explained the rally, which it said is being funded by the state government is an invitation to anarchy.
According to him, the motive of the rally, which has been planned for the eve of the Supreme Court judgment, is to intimidate the judiciary.
BDF advised all parties to the governorship tussle to respect the judicial process in the interest of the state and the country. Meanwhile, the Bayelsa State Government has distanced itself from the one-million-man rally, stating the government does not need to sponsor a rally to alter the ruling of the Supreme Court on the issue before it.
Senior Special Assistant, Media and Public Affairs to the Governor, Mr Daniel Iworiso-Markson in a statement, titled 'Peace Walk' while acknowledging that the office of the Special Adviser on Youths is organizing a peace walk, said it has no connection with the one-million-man march.
According to him, the peace walk, which was scheduled for tomorrowand shifted to April 17 because of the presidential visit to the state, is a march to denounce the vices in the society often perpetrated by the youths and other criminal-minded persons. Markson stated that Governor Dickson would lead the March and later address the youths at a forum slated for the cultural centre.