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‘Our mandate will be restored’ — Sylva breaks silence on Lyon’s sack



Timipre Sylva, minister of state for petroleum, says the mandate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Bayelsa state will be restored.

Sylva said this in reaction to the sack of David Lyon as governor-elect of Bayelsa by the supreme court. Lyon was sacked by the apex court just 24 hours before the governorship inauguration.

Douye Diri, his Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) rival, was subsequently sworn in as the governor.

In a statement issued on Sunday, Sylva, a former governor of the state, said President Muhammadu Buhari and Aisha Buhari, his wife, had planned to attend the occasion.

Sylva, who is the APC leader in the state, apologised to the president for the “disruption of his busy schedule”.

He further asked the people of Bayelsa to shun violence while, adding that the legal team of the ruling party is already exploring the options available to them.

Sylva said: “I want to use this moment to call on all the people of our dear state, Bayelsa, to kindly shun all acts of violence and lawlessness.

“Also of great importance to me is to extend my profound apology to our President, His Excellency Muhammadu Buhari, GCFR, over the avoidable disruption to his busy schedule which was caused by the events of the moment.

“I am aware that Mr. President and his lovely wife Her Excellency Aisha Buhari had concluded arrangements to travel to Bayelsa to witness the inauguration of the APC Governorship candidate as Governor of Bayelsa State. I therefore extend my apology to Mr. President and members of his entourage.

“To the good people of Bayelsa state, I would like to emphasize the need for restraint at all times. No doubt the events of the last few days are as provocative as they are regrettable.

“But as tempting as it might be for anyone to take the law into their hands, such temptation must be resisted in the greater interest of our state and the political stability of the country at large.

“The leadership of our great party the All Progressives Congress (APC) has directed its team of legal experts to study the situation critically and proffer legal options available to the party accordingly.

“We should therefore all remain faithful to, and have confidence in, the wisdom and ability of the party leadership to provide direction at this very sensitive time.

“Let me conclude by assuring Mr. President and our party hierarchy that despite this temporary setback, APC in Bayelsa remains strong and its members resolute in our support for the ideals of a greater and prosperous Nigeria as envisioned by our President, His Excellency Muhammadu Buhari.

“The mandate will be restored and that dream of a better, greater Bayelsa State will be actualised.”