Barely 24 hours to the supplementary elections in Southern Ijaw local government and few other polling units, the South South Emancipation Initiative, SSEI, has raised alarm over the alleged massive influx of thugs into the local government.
The non-governmental organisation in an email statement to our correspondent alleged that the All Progressives Congress, APC, governorship candidate, has hired armed thugs from Edo and Ondo states to unleash mayhem on members of the community.
National coordinator of the SSEI, Ebi Briggs, decried the militarization of the poll and fingered the police and other security agencies of working in consort with the APC to rig the poll.
“It is real irony that a party that was afforded a level playing at the national elections cannot guarantee free, fair and impartial field for all parties. The situation in Southern Ijaw is tense and unfortunate following the invasion of the once peaceful community by unknown thugs bearing arms and unleashing violence while security agencies have suddenly become bats.
“The reality remains that injustice is only temporary as truth and the ballot will always win above bullets and intimidation.
“The federal government should demonstrate its neutrality in the rerun by ensuring that the hoodlums and their sponsors are immediately brought to book before the matter escalates beyond control.
“The results of seven local governments have already shown that the APC candidate is not the natural and preferred candidate for Bayelsa, therefore his resort to gangsterism and thuggery will not take him to Government House because Bayelsans will resist the terror and intimidation to the last man,” Briggs warned.