Some youths in Bayelsa State have described as a witch-hunt the invitation of the immediate past governor of the state, Senator Seriake Dickson by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
Dickson was on Tuesday a guest of the anti-graft agency who were acting on a petition by the Bayelsa Progressive Minds Forum, a Non-governmental Organisation, accusing him of diversion of flood funds and undeclared assets.
But the youths think otherwise, saying the invitation was an attempt to smear his good name, ridicule him before the public and silence his loud voice in the National Assembly.
The youths under the aegis of the Bayelsa West Youth Congress (BWYC), an umbrella body of all youth associations in Dickson’s senatorial district, stated that those behind it are wasting their time as their plans will not work because the former governor is clean and served the state well for eight unbroken years and without blemish.
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Rising from its emergency meeting held in Yenagoa, the state capital, chairman of the group, Comrade Ebide Brown emphasized that Senator Dickson was only invited to clarify issues bordering on the frivolous petition and he honoured it, saying “a clear conscience fears no accusation”.
Comrade Brown said there was something foul about the petition as all allegations leveled against the former governor were unsubstantiated, flimsy, and should never have been entertained by the anti-graft agency, as it was only a waste of precious time and resources.
On his part, Spokesman of the group, Comrade Hitler Moses, said the allegation is a campaign of calumny being sponsored by faceless individuals, preferably political opponents of Senator Dickson who are afraid of his rising political profile, which has endeared him to many Nigerians.
He appealed to the people of Bayelsa West to disregard the wanton lies against Senator Dickson as he is convinced beyond doubt that the NGO is being used to pull Dickson down by tarnishing his image.
In his remarks, Secretary of the BWYC, Mr Diepreye Boss, called on Senator Dickson to brace up for more attacks from his enemies, but assured that the organization is standing solidly behind him and will give him total support come 2023.
He warned those who think they can dampen the spirit or exponential political growth of Senator Dickson to have a rethink as no amount of unsubstantiated and frivolous claims will distract him from giving the best of representation in the red chamber.
The BWYC leadership equally called on the EFCC to leave no stone unturned in its investigations with the belief that Senator Dickson is without blemish, adding that NGOs being used to witch-hunt and tarnish the image of people should be prosecuted to act as a deterrent to discourage others from following the ugly path.