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PANDEF to Sylva: Emulate Jonathan, congratulate Diri over Bayelsa guber poll victory

The Pan Niger Delta Forum (PANDEF) has asked Timipre Sylva, candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), to congratulate Douye Diri over his victory in the Bayelsa governorship election.

On Monday, Diri, governor of Bayelsa and candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), was declared the winner of Saturday’s election after he scored 175,196 votes to defeat his close challenger, Sylva.

Sylva polled 110,108 votes. This is the second time Diri is contesting for the position of governor.

The off-cycle governorship election in Bayelsa was one of the three conducted by INEC on Saturday — the others were in Kogi and Imo states.

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In a statement on Monday signed by Emmanuel Essien, national chairman of the group, PANDEF urged Diri to be “magnanimous” in victory, while calling on political stakeholders in the state to work together.

The Niger Delta group commended the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and the security operatives for the “orderly manner” in which the election was conducted.

“The National leadership of the Pan Niger Delta Forum (PANDEF) calls on all the other governorship candidates in the election, especially former Governor Chief Timipre Sylva of the All Progressives Congress (APC), to follow the example set by the noble son of Bayelsa State and the Niger Delta, former President Goodluck Jonathan, in reaching out to Governor Diri who has been returned winner of the November 11 Governorship election, in the overall interest of Bayelsa state,” the statement reads.

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“PANDEF further commends the people of Bayelsa State for the relatively peaceful governorship election, which was devoid of violence in most places.”

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