Douye Diri, candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in the November governorship election, has been sworn in as governor of Bayelsa State.
The inauguration took place at government house, Yenagoa, the state capital, on Friday, February 14, 2020.
While delivering his inaugural speech, Senator Douye Diri asked the people of Bayelsa to embrace love and avoid hatred which he said could inhibit the growth and development of the state.
David Lyon, Diri’s All Progressives Congress (APC) rival, was preparing for inauguration on Thursday when the Supreme Court sacked him on the grounds that Biobarakuma Degi-Eremieoyo, his running mate, presented forged certificates to INEC.
Following the ruling, INEC issued a certificate of return to Diri in Abuja, on Friday and he flew back to Yenagoa to take over from Seriake Dickson, the immediate past governor, whose tenure ended today.
Aggrieved protesters had trooped to the streets, especially in Yenagoa, to express dissatisfaction with the supreme court ruling.
They lit bonfires, blocked major roads and also invaded the residences of Dickson and the new governor, where they destroyed many vehicles.
Shortly after this, the police imposed a curfew in the state.
Diri is the fifth civilian governor of Bayelsa.
In a unanimous judgment delivered by Justice Ejembi Ekwo, on Thursday, February 13, 2020, the apex court ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, to withdraw the Certificate of Return issued to Mr. Lyon.
The Apex Court also ordered a fresh certificate be issued to the governorship candidate with the highest votes cast and wide geographical spread in the governorship election held on November 16, 2020.
Mr. Lyon was sacked for presenting a running mate with a fake certificate in the said election.
This judgment paved the way for the governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Diri Duoye to become with the highest lawful votes and with wide geographical spread and thus, qualify to be sworn in as the governor of the oil-rich state.