The last may not have been heard about the crisis rocking the Bayelsa State Chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) following report that the Minister of State for Petroleum (Oil), Senator Heineken Lokpobiri, has united the state’s Governor, Senator Douye Diri with his arch-enemy, Minister of Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Mr. Nyensom Wike.
A group within APC, which styled itself “Concerned APC Stakeholders (CAPCS) “, revealed that Senator Lokpobiri has settled the rift between Diri and Wike, which arose from the last presidential primaries of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
According to the group, Lokpobiri, leveraging on his closeness to the former governor of Rivers State had prevailed him on him to forgive the Bayelsa Governor over his refusal to support him during the intra-party election of PDP, which produced former Vice President Atiku Abubakar, as the presidential standard-bearer of the main opposition party ahead of the 2023 election.
According to the group, Lokpobiri’s intervention and reconciliation of the feuding politicians were parts of his strategies to garner support for the re-election of the governor in the November 11 governorship election in the state.
It was gathered that the action of the group was meant to ensure that the APC’s candidate in the election did not emerge victorious in the poll.
Diri was reported to have incurred the wrath of Wike as the Bayelsa governor abandoned him and supported Atiku Abubakar in the presidential primaries.
Wike was said to be livid that despite that he released heavy funds to Bayelsa State delegates through Diri, the governor swayed and persuaded the delegates to vote Atiku Abubakar.
The group, in a press statement by its coordinators, Mr. Nimi Benigha-Amange and Kopiamu Arikibai, said Wike, who is still not pleased down deep inside his heart with Diri had resolved to back the candidate of APC, Chief Timpreye Sylva, before he was persuaded to forgive and throw his weight behind the incumbent governor by the oil minister.
“In furtherance of his intention to frustrate the election of Timpreye Sylva, Senator Lokpobiri has brought former Governor Wike and Douye Diri together in reconciliation. Although Wike does not have any political influence in Bayelsa state other than his relationship with Lokpobiri, but he can provide funds for any side he favours to win the election.”
“Former Governor Wike has been unhappy with Douye Diri before now but Senator Lokpobiri has succeeded in reconciling them to enable him to foster and achieve his interest of ensuring Timpreye Sylva fails in the election.”
“The intensity of sabotage within APC is very pronounced. Prominent APC leaders, who claimed to be aggrieved in one way or the other are holding nocturnal meetings with Douye Diri and PDP leadership to sabotage their party in the election.
“People like Senator Lokpobiri, David Lyon and some serving and formers members of the state and national assemblies, especially those from Timpreye Sylva locality are said to just be playing along with APC, they are all known to be working with PDP to deliver Douye Diri on November 11.”
“These prominent politicians do not hide their hatred for Timpreye Sylva and they openly say it everywhere that Timpreye Sylva cannot fly and that he is not going to anywhere. They want to finish APC from within in the election. Most of them have been hugely compromised.”
“But no matter how they pretend, the outcome of the election in their areas will show and demonstrate their genuine commitment to the party. The outcome of the election in their areas will show their political value. It will show what political value do you have and people will judge you mainly by your results. A serving minister, who cannot deliver his unit, ward and local government has shown his political value and worth,” the group added.
Meanwhile, the group has urged the National Working Committee (NWC) of APC to sanction erring members and leaders of the party in the state.
“We seize this opportunity to call on our indefatigable National Chairman, His Excellency Abdullahi Ganduje and members of the NWC of our esteemed party to wield the big stick against the saboteurs in our party in order to ensure victory for our candidate, Chief Timpreye Sylva, come November 11th,” they stated.