- Umar Sani, a former aide to vice president, Namadi Sambo, has revealed why PDP lost Bayelsa election
- Sani said the inability of the party to manage its internal crisis in the state gave the APC victory
- The ex-presidential aide, however, noted that Governor Dickson's lack of regard for Jonathan also contributed to the party's loss
A former presidential aide, Umar Sani, has said that the defeat suffered by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) during the Saturday, November 16, governorship election in Bayelsa state could have been averted if the party had fielded a popular candidate.
In an exclusive interview with Legit.ng, the former senior special assistant to ex-vice president Namadi Sambo, said that failure of the outgoing governor of the state, Seriake Dickson, to accord due respect to his benefactor and former president of Nigeria, Goodluck Jonathan, greatly contributed to the party's poor performance in the election.
He said the consensus of the stakeholders was for former director-general of Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), Timi Alaibe, to be given the opportunity to represent the party at the gubernatorial contest.
Sani, however, said that Dickson's urge to anoint his successor at all cost pitched him against some party's stakeholders in the state before the election.
He said: "Let me start with Bayelsa state. The consensus of the stakeholders was for Timi Alaibe to be given the opportunity to represent the party at the gubernatorial contest since he is considered the most popular aspirant the party can present and succeed.
"However, Seriake Dickson will have none of that, like any other PDP governor, he wants to anoint his successor. The party was in a cul de sac to refuse a serving governor his request and face betrayal or to accept his request and face the consequences. They chose the latter and it landed the party in such a bad situation."
The former presidential aide said that rumour has it that the governor not only showed disdain to the ex-president, he never consulted him for anything pertaining to the progress and development of the state in the last few months.
He said Dickson abandoned Jonathan immediately he lost the presidential election in 2015.
"One cannot forget that Seriake Dickson has been having a running battle with former president, Goodluck Ebele Jonathan. What was the cause of their imbroglio cannot be ascertained but rumours have it that Dickson does not confer any regard worthy of note to the ex-president and never consulted him for anything pertaining to the progress and development of the state.
"Notwithstanding the fact that Jonathan made him governor at the detriment of Timiprey Sylva, Dickson abandoned Jonathan immediately he lost elections," he said.
Speaking on the alleged rumours that Jonathan worked against PDP in the election, Sani said that although the claims could not be substantiated, the events that followed the election pointed to the fact that the former president might have worked for the emergence of the APC's candidate, David Lyon.
He said: "Although one cannot provide substantial evidence to prove that the former president engaged in any anti-party activities before, during and after the elections, fingers are pointing at him for hosting APC chieftains immediately after the elections and for the outcome of the results of the elections in Ogbia local government which happens to be his local government, all these gave room for speculations and allegations of short-changing the party by the former president and his multitude of his supporters.
"Other reasons adduced are the incompetence of the electoral body, the bias exhibited by the security agencies and the use of thugs to perpetrate electoral violence leading to ballot box snatching, stuffing and all other forms of electoral offences."
Meanwhile, Legit.ng had previously reported that Dickson described the just concluded governorship election in the state as a military coup.
It was reported that the governor on Tuesday, November 19, tendered video evidence to support his claims that the poll was rigged in the state to favour the All Progressives Congress.
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