Former President Goodluck Jonathan, has expressed disappointment over the late arrival of election materials to his Polling Unit 39, Ward 13, in Otuoke, Ogbia Local Government Area (LGA) of Bayelsa.
Jonathan, who was expecting to cast his vote, stepped out of his house at 8:30 a.m., but met only journalists as the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) officials were yet to arrive at the venue.
“Are you an electoral officer, where are they?” The former president asked a journalist at the venue.
“Well this is where I will vote, but since they are not here yet, let me go back inside.
“You see now, youths of nowadays, you need to do more,” he stated.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), reports that at the time of filing this report at 10:30 a.m, no official has arrived at the polling unit with materials for the exercise.
Security personnel have mounted checkpoints in major junctions in Yenagoa, the capital of Bayelsa, as the state votes to elect its governor, News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports.
Checks around the city showed heavy security presence at Imgbi, Opolo, Akenfa, Igbogene Okarki and gateway junctions.
Also heavily manned is the Tombia Roundabout, a location within the town that hosts major transport companies and motor parks.
NAN reports that although these junctions were barricaded, security agents on duty were not seen harassing road users.
Some residents who spoke to NAN said that the presence of security agents had rekindled hopes that voters would be safe to exercise their franchise.
One of them, Mr Henry Onari, a civil servant, commended the security personnel for their civility and peaceful conduct.
“I have not seen them harassing anybody, they are merely searching vehicles not marked for election duty, this is a good development,’’ Onari said.
Another resident,Mr Leader Ndutimi, described the security checks at the junctions as a step in the right direction.
“It is an election day, we don’t expect free movement, thoroughness is expected of the security agencies, and that is what we are seeing,’’ Ndutimi said.
Miss Nengi Tomprenbofa, a nurse, said the screening of vehicles and other road users by security agents was commendable.
“These checkpoints are in order, you can see that people are already beginning to regain confidence, I am happy with the situation,’’ Tomprenbofa said
Fear, security scare, as Bayelsans elect new governor
With few hours to the governorship election in Bayelsa State, fear, tension and anxiety have enveloped the state as residents are afraid of the unknown.
This is as a result of reports of violence and killings recorded in some parts of the state.
In Yenagoa, the state capital, reports show that some suspected political thugs dressed in military uniforms are allegedly distributing guns to young men for them to foment trouble during Saturday’s election.
Places such as Nembe, Azuzuma, and Ogbia are currently witnessing violent activities by political thugs who are allegedly attacking residents. Some of the community members have reportedly fled to the forest.
Other places where there is apprehension includes Opuama in Southern Ijaw local government area, where eight-speed boats filled with armed men were reportedly sighted floating, thereby preventing people from entering the town.
Military personnel have also been deployed to different parts of the state. Communities such as Peretorugbe in Ekeremor local government area were surrounded Friday night by heavy military presence as the Nigerian Army now conduct stop and search on everyone coming in and going out of the community, to prevent breakdown of law and order.
Electorates in Bayelsa State will on Saturday, go to the poll, to choose their next governor for the next four years.
The battle of who emerges governor of the State is clearly between Senator Douye Diri, of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, who has the backing of the incumbent governor, Seriake Dickson and the All Progressives Congress, APC, governorship candidate, David Lyon.
There have been records of violence and killings with continued clashes between the two leading political parties heading to the Saturday’s polls.
Follow this thread for updates of results and incidents from different polling units in the State.