Electoral violence: Bayelsa commission begins sitting


Former Bayelsa Governor, Seriake Dickson

Gov. Seriake Dickson

The Commission of Inquiry on election violence set up by Gov. Seriake Dickson of Bayelsa has commenced sitting.

The commission, which commenced the sitting on Monday, admitted evidences from complainants at the Multi-Door Court House in Yenagoa.

The Chairman of the commission, Justice Ineikadei Eradiri, said the body would abide strictly with its terms of reference.

He also said the commission would avoid any matter that bordered on the actual conduct of the Presidential and National Assembly elections held on Feb. 23.

Eradiri said matters concerning conduct of elections fell within the jurisdiction of the relevant election petition tribunals already set up.

The chairman, who explained that the commission would hear oral, documentary and other forms of evidence from witnesses, appealed to all those involved to observe the rules of engagement.

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He gave an assurance that the commission would maintain the highest level of independence, fairness and impartiality while abiding by its oath of office.

Eradiri also called on those with useful information to come forward and testify so as to assist the commission.

The chairman, who warned that the commission would deal with anyone caught threatening witnesses, urged them to report such matters to the police.

The Secretary of the Commission, Dr Richard Ogbe, described the commission as apolitical.

He pledged that the commission would ensure that those involved in violence during the elections in the state were brought to book.

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