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Tribunal verdict: My victory is for democracy, Bayelsans – Dickson

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Governor Henry Seriake Dickson of Bayelsa State has applauded the judgment

of Election Petitions Tribunal sitting in Abuja which upheld his victory

in the December 5 2016 governorship election describing it “a victory for

democracy and Bayelsans.”
The governor in a statement issued on Tuesday evening by his Chief Press

Secretary, Daniel Iworiso-Markson, also commended the judiciary “for

upholding our nation's democracy and once again acquitting itself as the

bastion of our democracy.”
The All Progressives Congress (APC) and its candidate, Timipre Sylva, had

challenged the election of Dickson of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)

seeking a reversal of the decision of the Independent National Electoral

Commission (INEC) which declared him as the valid winner of the election.

But in a unanimous decision, the three-man tribunal, led by Justice Kazeem

Aloba, said the APC failed woefully to prove its case.

The tribunal consequently dismissed Sylva's petition and upheld Dickson's

election as earlier declared by INEC.
The governor, according to Iworiso-Markson, praised Bayelsans for voting

for him and his party on conviction and stood to protect their votes.

The governor, who regretted the loss of lives and property during the

election, decried the “intimidation of voters” which he regarded as a

failure of institution.
Dickson, however, said that the judgement indicated that “the resolve of

the people did not go in vain” as he canvassed for “greater vigilance to

protect democracy” in the country.
He said, “We want to use this opportunity to thank the good people of

Bayelsa State for voting en-masse for the PDP and defending their votes

even in the face of such virulent intimidation and harassment. This

judgement is clearly a victory for democracy and the resilient and

courageous people of Bayelsa.”
The governor also commended the judiciary for its role as the defender of

the constitution, saying that without a fearless and independent

judiciary, democracy is imperiled.
According to him, it was not the election that was on trial per se but the

judiciary itself, adding that the judgement of the tribunal validated the

saying that the judiciary is the last hope of the common man.

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