Candidates of the All Progressive Grand Alliance in the House of Assembly elections for Kolokuma/Opokuma Constituencies I and II, Mr. Preye Ozori and Ebiye Tarabina, have raised the alarm over an alleged plot to rig the rescheduled elections.
Addressing a press conference in Yenagoa, the state capital on Wednesday, the candidates accused the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, of colluding with the Bayelsa State Government to rig the constituencies’ polls in favour of the Peoples Democratic Party.
They alleged that the appointment of Charles Tambo, a relative of Governor Seriake Dickson, as a Collation Officer for the Kolokuma-Opokuma elections, was the first step towards realizing the plot.
Tambo is the General Manager, Bayelsa State Newspaper Corporation.
They alleged that Tambo was deliberately appointed for the primary aim of manipulating the election results.
The candidates also said, “The Bayelsa State Government also plans to flood Kolokuma/Opokuma on election day for thugs, fake military officers and fake policemen, essentially to cause violence and a bloodbath.
“The whole plan is to generally intimidate our supporters from coming out to vote so that the PDP could easily rig the elections.
“The most disturbing aspect of the entire plan by the Bayelsa State Government to rig the election is the purported vow made by Governor Dickson that he will come to Kolokuma-Opokuma LGA to personally supervise the elections on April 18 and ensure that the PDP wins at all cost.
“Assuming but not conceding that Dickson made the vow, we hasten to point out that Dickson, being a non-indigene of Kolokuma-Opokuma, is barred by the Electoral Act from supervising elections in our local government”.
The candidates said they had petitioned the INEC Chairman, Prof. Attahiru Jega, and the Inspector-General of Police, Mr. Suleiman Abba, to act fast to protect them and their supporters.
Meanwhile, the Resident Electoral Commissioner in the state, Mr. Baritor Kpagih, has acknowledged receipt of the petition challenging Tambo’s appointment.
He, however, said Tambo’s name had been removed from the list of electoral officers.
“I am barely three months old here and I do not know anybody. So, when I received the petition, I checked the list and discovered that Tambo’s name was there. I quickly removed it. So, his name is no longer on the list”, Kpagih said.