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Bayelsa APC group berates Sylva for celebrating chieftaincy title amid boat mishap in his town

A group under the All Progressives Congress, APC, in Bayelsa State, APC for Truth, has criticised the immediate past Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva, for celebrating a chieftaincy title conferred on him by a village chief in Ohafia amid a boat mishap that claimed lives of traders in his country home, Okpoama, Brass Local Government Area.

The group, in a statement signed and sent to DAILY POST on Friday by Ndutimi Kuro, described Sylva’s decision to go ahead with the celebration despite the boat tragedy as the height of insensitivity.

“It is a sad commentary on the poor values Timipre Sylva places on the craze for chieftaincy titles above the about 15 precious lives of his own kits and kin of the Okpoama community who died in a boat capsize.

“We are much more pained that he celebrated the chieftaincy conferment just a day after the unfortunate death arising from the boat mishaps. It is insensitivity taken too far and we seriously condemn it in its entirety. Rather than showing empathy, Sylva is busy dancing Owanbe while his community is mourning”.


Kuro said that Sylva, as a former Governor and Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, would live with the moral burden for the rest of his life for his failure to construct a road to his riverine community.

“If he had constructed road to his community, this unfortunate boat mishaps and death would have been averted and still, he went on such insensitive celebration of chieftaincy title in the midst of mourning”, he said.

The group apologised on behalf of the party to the people of Okpoama and Okoroma communities and conveyed APC’s heartfelt condolences for the pain and loss of their loved ones.

Over 15 persons lost their lives in a boat mishap on their way from Okoroma in Nembe to Okpoama-Brass.

The accident occurred last Thursday and threw the entire state into mourning.

The Bayelsa State Governor, Senator Douye Diri, had earlier conveyed his condolences to the families of the souls lost in the boat mishap and directed the Commissioner for Health to take care of the medical bills of the survivors and other expenses to alleviate the impact of the incidence.

The APC group used the occasion to commend Diri for his intervention and bold initiative to rescue the people by commencing the construction of a highway to connect the riverine communities in Brass.

The group said the project, when completed, “will not only open up the oil rich hinterland of Brass but will also avert the twin problems of frequent boat mishaps and sea piracy bedeviling the area over the years”.

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