The cold war between Bayelsa State governor, Hon Seriake Dickson and the family of President Goodluck Jonathan appears to have deepened as the battle for tickets of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the state takes a new twist.
Speaker of the Bayelsa State House of Assembly, who is also a close ally of the governor, Hon Benson Konbowei has cautioned the president against interfering in the choice of senatorial candidates for the party in the state.
“Mr President is from the east senatorial district and we are talking about the central senatorial district. We are talking about a senator representing central senatorial district, so the president should have nothing to do with the issue. As far as the decision is concerned, it should come from us,” the speaker told LEADERSHIP in an interview.
Hon Konbowei’s position comes on the heels of reports that President Jonathan, as part of the deal reached with the leadership of the senate, has insisted on the return of Senator Emmanuel Paulker (Bayelsa central) in 2015.
The president/senators’ deal was to the effect that two senators per state would be given automatic tickets. Senators Paulker and Heineken Lokpobiri are touted to be favoured by the agreement as it affects Bayelsa.
This, however, does not go down well with Governor Dickson, who is insisting on the replacement of all the three senators, the five House of Representatives members as well as 22 out of the 26 member state assembly.
Hon Konbowei said in the interview: “We only gave him (Senator Paulker) a second chance and when the second chance was given to him he acted the same way, so why should we give him a third chance?
“The president doesn’t have to go to our constituencies, so we take all his messages back to the people. We take all the messages of Paulker to the people.”