APC Chieftain in Bayelsa State, Pastor Reuben C. Wilson, has said that the court will sack Senator Douye Diri while his party’s candidate in the just concluded governorship election, Chief Timipre Sylva, would be sworn in as governor.

Wilson, who is the South-South Coordinator of The Asiwaju Group (TAG) and Founder, Pastor Reuben Initiative For Good Leadership and Accountability, expressed this believe in a release he made available to TNN, on Monday.

Insisting that APC won the just conducted gubernatorial election in the state, the former Niger Delta freedom fighter stressed that he was confident that the party would reclaim what he described as their stolen mandate through the courts.

He lambasted ex-president Goodluck Jonathan over his supposed utterances and actions against the APC and its candidate, which he described as not palatable, provocative and distasteful.

Recall that Jonathan had said that he would have relocated his mother to Abuja if Diri had lost his reelection bid to the All Progressives Congress.


The former president who spoke when he visited the governor said, “We don’t want to go into an unnecessary crisis in the state. Results have been declared and we believe the election was conducted. We believe the governor won the election and we plead that people should accept it and work with the governor. Let all of us support him so that the state will move ahead.

“There should be nothing that will push the state backwards. We should think about the development of the state, starting with the issue of peace and security in the state. Within this last period, three years plus, there have been significant improvements in terms of cultism, kidnapping, and so on and so forth. I was saying before this election that if Diri lost this election, I would have relocated my mother to Abuja.”

Expressing disappointment over the utterances, Wilson urged Jonathan to conduct himself as an elder statesman in the politics of the state, rather than politicking for a particular candidate or party.

In the statement titled, “A Call On Dr. Goodluck Jonathan To Act As An Elder Statesman In Bayelsa State Politics,” the 2023 Southern Ijaw Coordinator of the APC Bayelsa Gubernatorial Campaign Council said, “I wish to use this medium to respectfully call on former President Goodluck Jonathan to act as an elder statesman in the politics of Bayelsa State.

“He is a highly revered elder statesman and should therefore, confine himself strictly to that enviable role and status. He should guide his utterances and actions as such. He should treat all political actors in the state as part of his political family and stop politicking for any particular candidate or party.

“The recent utterances and actions of Dr Goodluck Jonathan are not palatable. Such utterances are distasteful and provocative; and shouldn’t be coming from a person of the status of the former President.”

According to him, “Dr Goodluck Jonathan demonstrated the highest level of statesmanship when he conceded defeat to former President Buhari in the 2015 presidential election and he got applause from political leaders across the globe.

“We were all proud of his level of statesmanship and expected him to continue in that light to attract development to our dear state but unfortunately, he has derailed from that enviable height and earned himself the wrath of every public-spirited and patriotic Bayelsian who had hitherto loved him dearly.

“My call on the former President to conduct himself as elder statesman and desist from working against the political interest of the All Progressives Congress (APC) Bayelsa State chapter is strengthened by the fact that I have been one of his ardent supporters in his political career but he is losing my respect and support due to his latest utterances and actions with respect to the just concluded off-cycle Bayelsa gubernatorial election.”

Wilson recalled his experiences during the 2011 and 2015 elections. He said, “I worked assiduously for the election of Dr Goodluck Jonathan in 2011 and 2015. His then Special Adviser on Niger Delta and Coordinator, Presential Amnesty Programme, Hon. Kingsley Kuku can attest to the above fact.

“I organized several rallies across the country to drum up support for the former President, especially in the Niger Delta region with the massive mobilization of prominent personalities and Ex-Agitators in the Niger Delta. Hon. Kingsley Kuku, Alhaji Asari Dokubo, George Turnah, e.t.c, were among some of the dignitaries who attended one of the rallies I organized to mobilize support for Dr Jonathan in Uyo, Akwa-Ibom State in 2015.

“I funded all those events and activities with my personal funds and even got arrested by the EFCC after the exit of the former President because of my active involvement in his campaign activities. I slept in the same underground cell with his former ADC at the EFCC detention facility in Abuja. I was released the following day when they discovered that I was completely innocent of committing any crime.

“I also got involved and funded the media coverage of the meeting and press conference convened by Hon. Mike Ogiasa to drum up support for Dr Jonathan’s attempt to contest the 2023 Presidential election under the All Progressives Congress.

“I made all those sacrifices because I was his ardent supporter and follower but his latest utterances and actions targeted against the All Progressives Congress in Bayelsa State and its candidate in the just concluded Bayelsa State gubernatorial election, His Excellency, Chief Timipre Sylva is putting him in a very bad light in the state.”

He charged the former president, “Dr. Jonathan should stop fighting Sylva and concentrate on playing his elder statemanship role in order to continue enjoying the support of all Bayelsans. He is considered to be a political father to all politicians in Bayelsa State and should therefore, confine himself to such fatherly role.

“Dr Jonathan should realize that his fighting Sylva has never helped his political career in the past .He fought and removed Sylva as Governor of Bayelsa State and imposed Seriake Dickson on Bayelsans but same Dickson openly insulted him by saying that his years at the Presidency were wasted years for the Niger Delta people.

“Dickson used every opportunity to insult and antagonize him and his associates but Sylva never did so as Governor and even after his removal as Governor never made such derogatory utterances against him. The former President should stop fighting Sylva and the APC Bayelsa State Chapter. He should allow Sylva to breathe.

“The former President should stop going about trying to influence the courts to secure a favourable outcome for Douye Diri in the just concluded Bayelsa State gubernatorial election as we are confident that we will reclaim our stolen mandate via the courts. We won the election convincingly but was robbed of our victory by the connivance of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

“The new found romance with the hierarchy of the All Progressives Congress (APC) by the former President is seen by many as a ploy to negatively influence the party leadership against Chief Timipre Sylva. The recent visit by the former President to our National Chairman in this critical period when our party has just been robbed of its victory at the Bayelsa State gubernatorial election leaves a sour taste in the mouths of many and so many questions are begging for answers: Why is it that the former President who didn’t support the All Progressives Congress (APC) in both the 2023 presidential election and the just concluded Bayelsa gubernatorial election is trying to initiate a romance with our party hierarchy?

“It’s an open fact that Dr Jonathan supported Mr Peter Obi against His Excellency, Sen. Bola Ahmed Tinubu in the 2023 presidential election but why is he trying to create an unnecessary and undeserved friendly atmosphere with the Tinubu Presidency? Why is the former President going about trying to peddle his influence at the corridors of power?

“I believe strongly that these are all sinister moves well designed to negatively influence the party hierarchy and the presidency against Chief Timpre Sylva.”

Wilson also called on, “party faithful and critical stakeholder in the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bayelsa State chapter, that our party hierarchy and the Presidency should be cautious in relating with Dr Goodluck Jonathan because he doesn’t like our party and he is still angry with our party for making him lose the Presidency in 2015 and for refusing to make him our party’s consensus candidate in the 2023 presidential election. He is therefore, looking for every opportunity to get back at our party. His new found romance with our party hierarchy is not genuine and therefore, should be treated with great caution.”

To President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, he charged to, “urgently consider some of his ardent supporters in the South -South zone for appointment in his government as majority of his ardent supporters are not happy with what’s happening at the moment as they are yet to be considered for appointment while some persons who worked with the opposition parties against Mr President in the 2023 presidential election are the persons enjoying his Presidency at the expense of those who genuinely worked for the All Progressives Congress (APC) and Mr President.

“As an ardent supporter of Mr President, I’m deeply worried about the complaints of the genuine supporters of our party in the South -South, who deserve appointments but are yet to be considered for appointments. I traversed the length and breadth of the South -South zone as the South -South Coordinator of The Asiwaju Group (TAG) and Founder of the Pastor Reuben Initiative for Good Leadership and Accountability (PRIGLA) , to campaign for Mr President and that afforded me the opportunity to meet with a lot of genuine supporters of our party. It also availed me the opportunity to identify the people who truly worked for our party in the 2023 general elections and Mr President.

“Unfortunately, most of the ardent and true supporters of Mr. President are yet to be considered for appointment and it is negatively affecting the morale of Mr President’s great supporters and party faithfuls in the zone.

“I’m therefore, using this medium to call on Mr President to give preference to his ardent supporters with concrete evidence of such support for him in the 2023 presidential election in the South -South, for consideration in any such future appointments in his government. This is to enable the All Progressives Congress (APC) consolidate on its electoral gains in the South -South as it is such ardent and genuine faithfuls of our party that can truly strengthen the party with such opportunities.

“Finally, I thank Mr President for appointing great party faithfuls from the South-South zone, such as Hon. (Dr) Betta C. Edu as Honourable Minister of Humanitarian Affairs and Poverty Alleviation and Hon. Preye Oseke as a member of FERMA management team. These are people that truly deserve their appointments because they worked genuinely for your emergence and are true pillars of the party in the zone.”

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