Governor Henry Seriake Dickson may face trial for the alleged fraud-ridden airport project and other acts of financial indecency at the appropriate time.
The State Publicity Secretary of All Progressive Congress (APC) Dofie Buokoribo in a statement in Yenagoa said this while accusing the government of Governor Seriake Dickson of lacking answers and trying to divert attention from serious issues of accountability, due process and democratic governance” raised on November 15, 2018 by the party regarding the state‘s airport project.
He said, APC by carefully avoiding the critical concerns raised by the party and dwelling on the insult and abuse of APC leaders in its response, the Dickson government had only confirmed the fraudulent dealings observed in the execution of the project. It said, therefore, “Governor Dickson is guilty as charged.”
The most noticeable thing about the reaction of the Bayelsa State Government’s reaction to our statement of Thursday, 15 November 2018, on the Bayelsa Airport scam is that it did not address any of the issues we raised. This is unfortunate but understandable.
Unfortunate because the government is attempting to divert the attention of the Bayelsa populace from the serious issues of accountability, due process and democratic governance, which underscores our party’s intervention.
“We said the airport project is a fraud. We said at more than N80 Billion, it is grossly inflated. We said the airport project is a deliberate cover by Governor Henry Seriake Dickson to launder state funds. We have no reason whatsoever to change our well thought-out position.
Rather than address the concerns we raised, Governor Dickson, through his Information Commissioner, chose to abuse our party and its leaders, especially Chief Timipre Sylva. More than six years after it took office, it is pitiable that this so-called restoration government still considers former Governor Sylva its problem. If the restoration team does not know, shall we tell them that Sylva is not the issue here? It is Governor Dickson that needs to come clean.
The APC is a party of serious-minded people. We are not in competition with anyone as to who will emerge best in exchange of insults and abuse. We are focused on a better life for all the people of Bayelsa State. Of course, those who want to leave the football and focus on the legs of players’ are free to do so. It says a lot about their ethical orientation. Indeed, they diminish the high office of Bayelsa State Governor. For us, our eyes remain firmly on the football.
But then, the slant of the Dickson government’s response is understandable. We know, like every discerning Bayelsan, that Governor Dickson has no answers to our concerns. That is why he is seeking to divert public attention about the airport scam through abuse and insults. The implication of this irresponsible approach is that our fears have been confirmed – Governor Dickson is guilty as charged.
Like we pointed out in our previous statement, the day of reckoning is coming. Dickson shall surely stand trial for this airport scam and several other larcenies through which he has subjected Bayelsa civil servants and citizens to unprecedented poverty and misery since the last six years.”
In his reaction, Iworiso-Markson said the past administration in the state failed to give the people the desperately needed international airport between 2007 and 2011.
Iworiso-Markson said that the Gov. Timipriye Syla-led administration (now in APC) failed to build an airport in spite of the huge resources at the disposal of his administration.
According to him, the past administration used what should have been a laudable idea of an airport project to milk the state and siphoned billions of naira into private pockets.
The commissioner challenged the APC to tell Bayelsa people and Nigerians what the former governor did with N300 billion agriculture loan the state took from the World Bank.
According to him, the past administration also frittered away the N3 billion Millennium Development Goal (MDG) funds made available to the state and foisted a bond obligation of N125 billion on the state.