The race for the governorship ticket of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in Bayelsa State has continued to generate controversies between the state governor, Seriake Dickson and a former Managing Director of Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, Timi Alaibe.
This is as Governor Dickson, in a statement on Wednesday by his Special Adviser on Media Relations, Fidelis Soriwei, accused Alaibe of blackmailing him to gain political advantage for the party’s ticket.
Dickson, in the statement, accused Alaibe of circulating manipulated version of addresses he delivered during political meetings and at other fora with the intent to smear him for assumed political benefits and to win the PDP governorship ticket at all cost.
Advising Nigerians to discountenance the blackmail, Dickson said it was absurd that Alaibe “would go to the extent of manipulating audio recordings of his speeches for distribution to respected Nigerians with the intent to blackmail him.”
Responding, however, the Timi Alaibe Campaign Organisation said that it takes serious exception to allegations by Dickson that Alaibe is blackmailing him by circulating manipulated speeches of the governor.
The Alaibe campaign team stated this in a statement issued by its Administrative Secretary, Prof. Seiyefa Brisibe, in Yenagoa.
Titled, ‘We are too focused to be distracted’, Alaibe insisted that neither him nor any member of his campaign team was at the meetings referred to in the public statement issued by Soriwei, adding that “such access can only be traced to the originators of the statement.”
The statement reads in part: “For the records, let it be stated that we as a campaign organisation takes serious exception to the wrong use of tar-brush loaded words and gutter language to describe the person of our principal with the intent to incite the public against him; particularly over an issue he knows absolutely nothing about. This is unacceptable.
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“Our focus is to conduct our campaign on issues that will lead to the development of Bayelsa State through shared economic prosperity and not waste energy and time on commonplace matters.
“Since the beginning of the search for a successor to Dickson, and in spite of provocative and insulting statements by certain individuals and groups, including serving commissioners in the state, this is the first time we have decided to say enough is enough.
“Our silence should not be misconstrued to mean timidity, fear or any such thing. It was basically and still a measure of respect we and our Principal have for the person and office of the Governor. Unfortunately, that respect has not been reciprocated.”
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