Nathan Tamarapreye, Yenagoa
The Bayelsa State Governor, Senator Douye Diri, remained undecided on the choice of candidate to back among the Six Youth leaders lobbying the 110 delegates designated to vote for the President of the umbrella body of Ijaw youths, the Ijaw Youths Council in the scheduled July 18th and 19th, 2023 elective convention.
While the direction of support of Gov. Douye Diri is not certain, his aides and loyalists including Director of Transport, Lucky Yeboa, the Special Assistant to Former President Jonathan on Domestic, Waripamowei Dudafa and the former Speaker of the State House of Assembly, Hon. Tonye Isenah have pre-empted the Governor and pushing support for two aspirants from the Kolokuma/Opokuna axis where the Governor hails from.
While Duda roots for Comrade Bolokpo Subai, Lucky Yeboa and Isenah are throwing their weight behind Benjamin Appah.
Ijaw youths regard their early and open display of support as a KOLGA agenda.
Despite their open display of support, the immediate past National Spokesman of IYC, Comrade Ebilade Ekerefe seems to gain wide acceptance among Ijaw Youths and Elders with his new era campaign.
Others in the race are the Former Speaker of the IYC Parliament, Comrade Digimie Pogonyo (Brass), Wilson Ikuli (Ogbia), former Central Zone Chairman, Comrade Jonathan Lokpobiri (Ekeremor).
Youth activists in the state however urged the State Governor, Senator Douye Diri to continue to play the fatherly role in the poll and allow the Ijaw youths to decide and produce a worthy successor to Deacon Timothy Igbifa.
Investigations however revealed that Jonathan, Ikuli and Subai are at risk of disqualification based on the 45 years age limit required to contest for any office in the IYC.
They are alleged to be above the required age limit for youth activism.
However, there is a raging crisis of confidence among the stakeholders of the IYC following allegations of misconduct by the Former President, Timothy Igbifa. Igbifa is alleged to have usurped the powers of the IYC electoral committee led by one Urang.
It was gathered that Urang was allegedly being hindered by Igbifa to work. Igbifa went further to sell nomination/expression of interest forms to some other aspirants including Comrade Kenneth Olorogun without the knowledge of the committee, ” he was selling forms from the hotel rooms.”
The action of Igbifa, according to inside sources, has led to summary impeachment action and the appointment of his Deputy, Comrade Savious Olali as Acting President of IYC.