Bayelsa, Taraba Relax Lockdown Few Days To Easter

A file photo of Bayelsa State Governor, Douye Diri of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) at the INEC headquarters in Abuja on February 14, 2020. Photo: Channels TV/ Sodiq Adelakun.



The Bayelsa State Government has relaxed the COVID-19 lockdown few days to the Easter celebrations to enable Christians mark the event.

Governor Duoye Diri who is also the Chairman of the State Task Force on COVID-19 made the announcement on Wednesday during a briefing at the Government House in Yenagoa, the state capital.

According to him, churches with large congregation are to hold services with not more than 50 members at a time.

He also directed that smaller churches to conduct their services with no more than 20 members during the Easter celebration.

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Speaking further, the state government asked residents of the state to observe the social distance rule as well as provide running water, soap for washing of hands and handkerchief for sneezing.

Similarly, the Taraba State Government relaxed the COVID-19 lockdown to enable residents of the state mark Easter service.

State Governor, Darius Ishaku who had earlier given the order to prevent the spread of COVID-19 said the relaxation on the lockdown will be effective from Thursday, April 9.

He noted that markets, shops, and other places of business are allowed to operate between 8:00 AM to 2:00PM daily, instead of the 6:00AM to 6:00PM.

The Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Hassan Mijinyawa, confirmed the development in a statement issued on Wednesday.

Mijinyawa said Governor Ishaku is not unmindful of the hardship the lockdown has caused many families.

He explained that both human and vehicular movements are also allowed during the period with caution to avoid large gatherings and social distancing.

The state government noted that the lockdown remains a necessary step that must be taken to protect lives, while appreciating residents of the state for their compliance.

Bayelsa Election: INEC Has Appropriated Judicial Powers To Interpret Laws – Oshiomhole


The All Progressives Congress (APC) has accused the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) of assuming the power of the judiciary to itself by declaring the governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Senator Duoye Diri as the duly elected governor of Bayelsa State.

Senator Diri was sworn in as the fifth civilian governor of Bayelsa state on Friday, after a judgement by a five-man panel of the Supreme Court sacking elected candidate of the All Progressive Congress (APC), David Lyon, and his Deputy, Biobarakuma Degi-Eremieoyo, hours before the inauguration.

READ ALSO: Douye Diri Sworn In As Bayelsa Governor

Addressing a news conference on Friday, the National Chairman of the APC, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole said that INEC acted illegally and the party is rejecting the declaration.

“I believe the fact that the Supreme Court insisted on the constitutional spread is in consideration of the fact that the constitution does not want a situation In which anyone; governor or president, preside over the affairs of their state without at least, enjoying two-third support of the state’s electorate.

“The votes scored by PDP and their candidate in that election, only met the requirement in five local government and you need six LG to meet the requirements of two-third; and the PDP candidate did not satisfy this requirement.

“INEC has now chosen to appropriate judicial powers to interpret laws that its neither competent to do; rather than allow the court to clarify the issue, INEC sought to appropriate judicial powers and chose to proceed without any express order from the Supreme Court,” he stated.

He stated that the party will seek legal redress to reclaim its mandate in the state.

“As a party, we have consulted and we have resolved that we do not accept and we reject the decision of INEC to illegally declare the PDP candidate as the winner of the election and purporting to waste votes cast in favour of David Lyon.

“We still believe that there are viable legal windows we can explore; we still affirm our confidence in the judiciary even with the pains in our heart,” he said.

Let’s Eschew Bitterness, Love Ourselves Regardless Of Party – Diri

Bayelsa State Governor, Duoye Diri, has called on people of the state to eschew bitterness and acrimony for the overall interest of all.

Diri who spoke during his inauguration on Friday in Yenagoa, the state capital also appealed for love to reign regardless of political affiliation.

“Let us eschew bitterness and acrimony and learn to love ourselves whether of the same party or of different parties. Primarily, we are brothers and sisters from Bayelsa State.

“Our creed today is to serve you. Like the immediate past governor (Seriake Dickson) will say, that he who serves men well serves God well,” he said.

His swearing-in comes a day after the Supreme Court sacked the former governor-elect of Bayelsa State, David Lyon, and his Deputy, Biobarakuma Degi-Eremieoyo.

READ ALSO: Douye Diri Sworn In As Bayelsa Governor

A five-man panel of the apex court led by Justice Mary Peter-Odili ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), to withdraw the Certificate of Return that had been issued to the candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) as the winner of the November 16, 2019 governorship election.

The court then ordered INEC to issue a fresh Certificate-of-Return to the candidate of the party with the next highest votes and with the required constitutional spread of votes in the results of the election, which was the PDP.

Hours before the swearing-in on Friday, INEC officially declared Diri as the winner of the election in the state.

He was sworn-in along with his Deputy, Biobarakuma Degi-Eremienyo.

INEC Declares PDP’s Douye Diri Winner Of Bayelsa Election

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has declared the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Senator Duoye Diri, as the winner of the Bayelsa election.

The INEC Chairman, Mahmood Yakubu, who made this announcement on Friday at the INEC headquarters in Abuja said the certificate of return will be issued immediately to the winner.

READ ALSO: Supreme Court Sacks Lyon As Bayelsa Governor-Elect, Hours Before Inauguration

Yakubu while briefing journalists at the INEC Headquarters confirmed receiving the true certified judgement of the court.

According to him, the commission met on Friday morning to review the results of the election, without the votes of the APC which have been voided by the court.

The total votes cast after excluding those of the APC now stand at 146,999. PDP polled 143,172 and scored 25 percent as required by the law.

As at the time of this report, Senator Diri is in the conference room set to receive his certificate of return.

He is accompanied by dozens of his supporters, including some leaders of the PDP.


See photos of the INEC Chairman and senior officials of the Commission during the briefing…


Bayelsa Election: Soldiers ‘Chased Away’ Key PDP Stakeholders, Diri Alleges


The candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Mr Duoye Diri, has faulted the outcome of the governorship election in Bayelsa State.

Diri, who addressed a news conference on Sunday, accused the Nigerian Army of intimidating agents and supporters of the PDP in Ogbia Local Government Area (LGA) of the state.

“The Nigerian Army is in Ogbia chasing away all PDP agents and all PDP key stakeholders from Ogbia, arresting most of our stakeholders; arresting all key stakeholders in Ogbia and as we speak, the Nigerian Army is there in Ogbia,” he told reporters while the collation of results from the eight LGAs in the state was ongoing at the office of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Yenagoa.

The PDP candidate added, “We want to use this opportunity to call on the soldiers who are in Ogbia to immediately withdraw from Ogbia Local Government Area.”

READ ALSO: INEC Declares APC’s David Lyon Winner Of Bayelsa Governorship Election

He alleged that some soldiers stormed the collation centre in Ogbia, stressing that such an action was unacceptable to his party.

PDP governorship candidate, Duoye Diri.



Diri also called on the electoral body to reject all the results from Ogbia LGA, claiming that they have been “doctored and tutored”.

“This is not the way our democracy will advance; this is not the way our democracy will progress,” he stressed.

The PDP candidate made the allegations hours before INEC returned the candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Mr David Lyon, as the winner of the keenly contested election.

INEC’s Returning Officer and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Benin, Professor Faraday Orunmuwese, declared Lyon as the winner after scoring the highest number of votes in the poll.

The APC candidate polled a total of 352,552 votes to defeat his closest rival of the PDP who scored 143,172 votes.

See the table below: