Diri urges Bayelsans to participate in March 18 election, commends security agencies, INEC

Yenagoa—Governor of Bayelsa State, Senator Douye Diri has called on residents in the state to come out en-mass and participate in this weekend’s House of Assembly election slated to hold on Saturday 18 March 2023.

Diri who made this known in a statewide broadcast on Thursday thanked Bayelsans for voting for all candidates of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in last month’s presidential and National Assembly elections stated that “together, we have sent an unambiguous message that Bayelsa is 100% PDP and PDP is 100% Bayelsa.”

According to him, “together, we have sent the clearest message yet to our opponents that the people of Bayelsa appreciate the efforts of the PDP to build a state that will meet the aspirations of all its citizens.

“I urge you to come out in great numbers to demonstrate that same level of commitment and confidence in our House of Assembly candidates on the ballot on March 18, 2023. We cannot afford to be complacent.

“In Bayelsa, we are committed to entrenching a culture of voting without intimidation. Elections are about ballots, not bullets. Citizens must not only be allowed to vote, but their votes must be counted, and their votes must count.

“Thankfully, this was our experience in all the 2,244 polling units in the 105 wards across the eight Local Government Areas of the State where no single incident of death was recorded.”

While commending security agencies and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) for the conduct of last month’s election in the state, Diri raised concerns over the widespread complaints of irregularities in several places outside the state.

“It is crucial to draw attention to the logistical challenges and significant lapses in the performance of the BVAS machines in which much faith of the Nigerian people for a new paradigm in credible election is anchored.

“The major shift in our electoral process is the use of technology for electronic transmission of results from polling units to eliminate such vulnerabilities as fraudulent adjustment of figures at collation centers, which used to be a major bane of our electoral process. This, unfortunately, has not been adhered to, in the main,” he said.

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