Monday, 31 October 2011

Bayelsa: PDP NWC decides Sylva’s fate this week ...As Appeal panel submits report to PDP leadership

ABUJA – THE national leadership of the
Peoples Democratic Party, PDP yesterday
received the report of the Appeal
Screening Committee which arbitrated
alleged petitions raised against the
embattled Governor of Bayelsa State, Mr.
Timipire Sylva.
Following the receipt of the panel report,
members of the National Working
Committee, NWC went into a marathon
meeting where the report was
reportedly compared with that earlier
submitted by the Screening Committee. A
definitive statement on the fate of the
Governor and his leading challenger, Mr.
Timi Alaibe, the erstwhile Managing
Director of the Niger Delta Development
Commission, NDDC is coming out this
week Nigeria Naira News learnt.
At the NWC meeting presided over by
the Acting National Chairman of the PDP,
Alhaji Abubakar Kawu Baraje at the
party’s campaign office, Legacy house,
Abuja the party officials were said to
have deliberated on the Appeal Panel
report that reportedly raised issues with
the appropriateness of Governor Sylva
representing the party in the
forthcoming polls.
Nigeria Naira News gathered yesterday that the
Appeal panel questioned the manner the
screening committee overlooked certain
issues that were raised against
Governor Sylva bothering on security,
financial impropriety, among others.
According to a source present at the
meeting, the NWC is now faced with the
challenge of either ratifying or rejecting
the report of the Appeal panel led by
Mrs. Abiodun Olujimi, the former
Governor of Ekiti State.
It will be recalled that the screening
panel had in Port Harcourt screened
Governor Sylva, Alaibe, Ex-Director-
General, Nigeria Television Authority,
NTA, Mr. Ben Murray-Bruce, Henry
Dickson, Boloubo Orufa and Francis
At the end of the exercise, Governor
Sylva, Ben Murray-Bruce, Dickson,
Boloubo Orufa were cleared; while
Alaibe and the Permanent Secretary,
Ministry of Water Resouces, Ambassador
Godknows Igali failed to scale the
Following the clearance, Governor Sylva,
Alaibe, Bruce were, however, summoned
to face the Appeal Panel following issues
that were raised before the panel that
were reportedly overlooked by the
Brigadier-General Idi Adamu led
screening panel.
Efforts made to get the PDP National
Publicity Secretary, Professor Rufai
Ahmed Alkali to comment on the
outcome of the meeting proved
abortive as his phone was put off.
Governor Sylva yesterday, nevertheless
debunked reports that he has been
screened out of the Bayelsa PDP
governorship primaries by the Olujimi
In a statement made available to
journalists yesterday by his Chief Press
Secretary, Doife Ola, Sylva who noted
that his camp read with horror a report
that he has been screened out by PDP
for the 2012 Bayelsa State gubernatorial
election, said, “the report claims the
Gubernatorial Screening Appeal
Committee of the PDP headed by former
Ekiti State Deputy Governor, Mrs.
Abiodun Olujimi, considered Sylva
ineligible to fly the party’s flag “for
operating foreign accounts.
“Whatever the quality of the sources,
this report is completely false. It is low
quality fiction. It is a cheap lie sponsored
by those who are afraid to meet
Governor Sylva in the political field of
contest, and their paid and unpaid
agents, working collectively or severally.
“But then, we are not surprised as it
follows a familiar pattern of a structured
campaign of serial untruths about
Governor Sylva, a fact we alerted the
world about last weekend.
“For the avoidance of doubt, there is no
basis whatsoever for the PDP to exclude
Governor Sylva from the 2012 Bayelsa
governorship race. He is the man to
beat. Ownership and operation of a
foreign account by a serving public
officer is a criminal offence. No
competent court of law has indicted
Governor Sylva for operating a foreign
account. He has no such charge pending
anywhere in the world. God forbid!
“The PDP Gubernatorial Screening
Committee for Bayelsa last Friday issued
Governor Sylva a clearance certificate to
participate in the party primaries slated
for 19 November. That clearance
certificate remains valid.
“It is true that the governor was at the
national headquarters of the PDP Sunday
afternoon at the instance of the
Gubernatorial Screening Appeal
Committee. But as Sylva himself
confidently told reporters after meeting
with the committee, ‘the deliberations
were fruitful”.
The governor however appealed to his
supporters to continue to remain calm,
peaceful and law-abiding, just as he
expressed optimism that in the
prevailing circumstance the will of the
Bayelsa people shall ultimately prevail.

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