Femi Folaranmi, Yenagoa

The Minister of State for Petroleum Resources and former governor and leader of the APC in Bayelsa State, Chief Timipre Sylva has knocked Governor Douye Diri of Bayelsa State over a statement credited to him blaming him (Sylva) for the violence that swept through the state after the Supreme Court judgment that sacked Chief David Lyon of the All Progressives Congress (APC) as governor-elect.

Diri had on Thursday during an inspection tour of properties destroyed during the violence blamed the utterances of the APC national chairman, Adams Oshiomhole and Sylva for the violence.

Sylva, however, in his reaction contained in a statement signed by his Special Assistant on Media and Public Affairs, Julius Bokoru said he is amused at the public statements credited to Diri trying to connect acts of post-election violence in the state to him.

The minister who recalled that he had sued for peace through all available means expressed disappointment that Diri tends to toe the path of his predecessor who was obsessed with Sylva throughout his tenure.

He advised Diri to stop being dramatic and face the task of governance especially as Bayelsans are confronted with economic challenges.

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The statement read in part: “The claims are as absurd and preposterous as they are wrong. It is important to note that Sylva, being the statesman and advocate of peace that he has always been, called for calm from all parties both on national TV and papers

It is sad that Senator Diri cannot start his governorship on a brighter note, but rather, seeks to continue on the listlessness of his predecessor by obsessing over Sylva. Diri is advised not to tow that path and not to be haunted by the spectre of Sylva’s shadow.

Indeed, a snake cannot give birth to anything other than a snake, and while these, including early morning automobile loans, foreshadow a ruinous run, it is sad for a state still grappling with man-made economic sterility

The easier thing for someone with a jaundiced mandate to do is to pray for God’s forgiveness, especially for the utterly ambiguous means used in procuring that judgement. It is, however, left for God to decide if the anomaly that happened at the Supreme Court would hold

It is still too early to start shopping for sparring partners. The simple advice to Senator Diri is that he should haul away drama and focus on the task of governance before him.”