Wednesday, 27 March 2013


A torrential rain had fallen in the Bayelsa State capital, Yenagoa leading to flooding some major streets in Opolo market and its environ. Golden Pen was in Opolo when the rain began to fall. The weather was too foggy to the extent that motor drivers had no alternative than to quietly park and wait for the rain to subside. This is like giving support to the meteorological assertion that this year will be rainy to flood point. A resident in the  of Biogbolo who spoke on the heavy rains in the state capital Mr. Ayebalayefa Evans has observed that a good drainage work need be done to minimize the flood and called on the people clear their gutters.

Saturday, 23 March 2013


The Bayelsa State government that just celebrated her 1st Anniversary in office is taking a bold step to conduct the Local Government election, that is due to hold now. The governor of the state, Mr. Seriake Dickson is said to have released substantial amount of money for the State Independent Electoral Commission to be above board by way of conducting a hitch free exercise in the eight Local government areas of the state. 

Briefing the Press on the level of SIEC'S preparedness, the Chairman of the commission, Chief Blessing Izagara said the Commission  had worked round the clock to conduct not only free and fair polls but also a transparent one. 

Distant Local Government Areas as Southern/Ijaw, Ekeremor, Nembe and Brass Local Government needed more attention in terms of movement of people and materials to achieve desired result and the Commission is said to have mobilized in full force to achieve that. 


Fielding questions the chairman further said that contrary to the views by some politicians who are not sure of the

Friday, 22 March 2013


Bayelsa State today, holds another Local Government elections to choose credible leaders to pilot the  affairs of the third tier administrative system. The governor of Bayelsa State Hon. Henry Seriake Dickson  had constituted the State Electoral Commission with a team believed to be of impeccable character worthy of being good umpire. Dickson's choice of Chief Blessing Ipigansi Ijagara as Chairman of the Commission with the rest of the appointees is a major challenge upon the shoulders of Commission that will be played out today.
The Commission's Chairman, Chief Ijagara had on Thursday during a press briefing  assured the people of the State of preparedness to conduct a credible, free and fair polls. He charged political parties and the electorate to be law abiding during the exercise emphasizing that distribution of materials will get to their destinations in the 8 Local Government Areas on Schedule.
To that end the secretariat of the State Independent Electoral Commission{SIEC}Friday was a beehive of activities with Chairmanship and Councilor ship Candidates and some party faithfuls jostling for space and cross checking their names in the list of candidates.
The Security arrangement was tight as stern looking policemen and other mufti security officers at the background made the gate area very orderly. The office was busy into the night and observers have expressed the thoroughness in the arrangement as unprecedented with a very high expectationof a truly credible polls.
 Analyst are of the opinion that the exercise is just a mere window dressing that has nothing to do with transparency, nor sincerity, and that those to hold the various positions have been selected ahead of the election  only waiting to be announced.. 


Tuesday, 19 March 2013


Wonders shall not end is the best description to what happened in Kolo town in the Ogbia Local Government Area of Bayelsa State. It was on Saturday the 16th of March 2013 when the news went round town that the Senator representing the Bayelsa East Senatorial District in the National Assembly, Mr. Clever Marcus Ikisikpo was in town to honor God in a thanksgiving service  at the New Demonstrate Ministry's Land of Living Testimonies and Transformation.
Knowing Ikisikpo as one of the honorable embers  of the first and second Assembly in the State before his journey to the National Assembly first as member House of representative and now as Senator. Counting on him as one of our own, Golden Pen had to drive down to see Ikisikpo to both discuss coverage of the upcoming event and to possibly have a interview with him on some important issues concerning his senatorial district.
The time around 4.30pm and people were going in and out in their drove, when Golden Pen  arrived at the gate. A security man ordered him  politely to park his car outside and he did, but as he went in,  little did he know that he was going to meet some thugs in there. One tallish man was on phone for over five minutes who claimed to be a director in the Ikisikpo's political group flanked with a group of boys flanking. He asked Golden Pen why do you want to see the Senator and as that question was being answered, suddenly Senator Ikisikpo appeared and when he saw Golden Pen said: " ha this man I have not seen you for long' and they were exchanging pleasantries when the ferocious thuggery aid prevented Ikisikpo from talk with Golden Pen, Hear what he said: You are a local newspaper, we don't need any local paper because they don't get to Abuja. I have just gone to pay some national papers and television...' and when Golden Pen told him that some of the local papers were also read outside the state, and that it was not the best to condemn  since the Senator himself was raised from the same locality.
At that time the Senator was standing a few meters away looking at the drama without calling his thuggery aid to order. It was a big embarrassment for the thuggery aid to be so authoritative as to  control the Senator. Though Senator Ikisikpo did not say something some observers who spoke with Golden Pen on the matter noted that Senator Ikisikpo represents the great people of Bayelsa East comprising, Brass, Nembe and  Ogbia Local Government Areas including the president, and called on the Senator not to allow thugs or miscreants to dent his image or political career which he had built over the years.

Thursday, 14 March 2013


Reports from Ogboinbiri in Amassoma area of Southern Ijaw Local Government Area of Bayelsa State has it that, a gang of sea pirates operating in the creeks and water ways of the state had attacked a 12 sitter Yamaha 75 horse powered engine boat and carted away a sum of estimated at millions of naira including the speed boat.
The incident occurred at the Igbugbene territory where the pirates were said to have forcefully dispossessed their victims of valuable items; such as hand sets, cash. One of the victims who spoke to Golden Pen on a strict condition of anonymity for security reasons said the total sum of four hundred and twenty thousand Naira {N420,000} and a cheque of five hundred thousand naira {500,000}, the other eleven commuters including men and market were beating and various amounts of monies collected before they were driven to the swamp and the new boat carted away with various items.

Meanwhile a man who gave his name simply as Thomson Friday has called on the Federal and State governments to deploy the Nigerian Navy to police the water way and creeks in the state to avoid re- occurrence of such dastardly acts. According to Mr. Friday, only the Navy is capable of checkmating or handling the menace.
He explained that another incident of sea piracy was reported penultimate week in the axis of Egbemo Angalabiri to Bomordi where 5 speed boats were collected at gunpoint from different communities of which, Mr. said the state government is aware of, and urged the government not to delay action..

Tuesday, 12 March 2013


The world is a class for man to learn lessons every day and that is what we can take from the resignation of Pope Benedict VI who without coercion submitted a letter of resignation to give way for another Pope to succeed him. The papacy is a life time anointing to function in the office of God, but this great man has shown the way to other world leaders in high offices that every throne can be abdicated.

  But the irony of the whole thing is that, such acts of official benevolence is not common to come by: especially in the African family. Most of our leaders have refused to resign even at the expense of the life of the nation or of individuals. This has played out over the years, with most of past African leaders refusing to quit until what happens to those who refuse to quit happens to them. If African leaders like Field Marshall Idi Amin of Uganda, Sgt Dow and Charles Taylor all of Liberia, Gaddafi of Libya and others could have escaped death if they had toed the line of resignation.

Chief Evans Tubonah
Modern day politics demand such values that men in high offices should not worship offices, but as every other thin that must be left behind when the right time comes. Not only politicians, but whoever is occupying a high position should best be led by conscience to know when to quit, like the Pope has done.

Saturday, 9 March 2013


There is no gainsaying, the fact that, Bayelsa is wearing a new look in a true sense of the word. Inquisitive minds will not waste a moment to ask how is that true, why is it so and who is responsible? Such questions a expository, and are necessary, so the indices will prove the high level of uncompromising and dehumanizing poverty.
The first area to see is the cost of living. In Bayelsa, you may think that you are not in Nigeria, but in another country because of the cost of petroleum product in the state capital or its environ. Sorry to say that it is only in Bayelsa that the product is sold at N120 a litre as against the approved pump price of N97
.But as you move out of Bayelsa to nearby Rivers and Delta states and everywhere in Nigeria the pump price of petroleum is N97 which is the approved price by the federal government. exorbitance of cost to what applies in other states.
The worst is in the riverine  area of the state which is cut off from Yenagoa the state capital because of the absence of roads. Fish farming being the mainstay of the economy of the people has kept those traditionally akin to fish farming to some settlements in the swamp to live with their families thus keeping away from the hustle and bustle of city life that is not easy to live without a good paying job.
Unlike the days of youth uprisings and militancy when most bravado youth and their sponsors beat their chest to ill gotten billions, today the story is quite different. There is hunger in Bayelsa state.


Bayelsa State created on the first of October 1996 by that great military leader General Sani Abacha of blessed memory is no doubt a state that has myriad of challenges. One of these challenges is the economy; especially trade and industry which is like a far cry in the development process.
Thanks to traders who have come from other states to complement Bayelsans  in the markets, which is a welcome development, there is something that has been reported of traders in Kpansia market who have taken to smoking marijuana and other unethical public behaviors like playing gamble and polluting the environment with criminal conduct inside the market.
A commuter who gave his name as Opukeme Gilbert told investigating Journalists, that Kpansia market was  one of the best organized markets  in the state and wondered why some of the traders and or their cohorts were openly smoking marijuana and gambling.
He remarked that this ugly trend if not nipped in the bud would turn the Kpansia market to disrepute and called on the market authority to investigate and bring culprits to face the law so as to stop recurrence of such  unwholesome acts in our society.  





The Hon. Henry  Seriake Dickson led Restoration government has tried enough to rebuild the state civil service. by inculcating in workers the value of reporting early to work and closing at government approved time. Monday through Thursday is usually full day work, but Friday is different. 
On Fridays workers make arrangements to travel home to see their homes or travel out of the state to whatever place of their choice.
The wonderful way Yenagoa looks at weekends is in the attitude of the people and how they rush over everything as if amagedon is coming after them. In the offices they close before time and nobody receives query for closing earlier. That is a disease that is general to all, from the Permanent Secretaries to the least worker.The irony of the matter is that Permanent Secretaries who should have been in office more permanently are the ones who because of their giant status abscond attendance of duties on Fridays especially when the governor is away.
Bayelsa is like a land being pilfered, the way those with cars drive out of the state leaving the taxi drivers, the water vendors and the market people to stay around to wait for Monday to come for normal life to return the economically fledgling state. Weekend in Yenagoa the capital of Bayelsa State is truly boring. 


Bayelsa State Governor, Hon. Seriake Dickson says the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP was being repackaged for efficiency, cohesion and unity to enable it play its leading role in the affairs of the country.

Governor Dickson made this remark, while fielding questions from Government House correspondents shortly on arrival from Abuja, where he was part of current efforts at repositioning the ruling PDP for maximum results.

Assuring the supporters of the party in the state that all is well, he also reacted to rumours making the rounds in the state about his office; describing the rumours as baseless and attributed the development to lack of education and idleness.

Governor Dickson noted that his administration's major focus was in the area of education and by the time the policies in the sector take root and jobs are created for the many jobless youths, the problem would be minimized.

He restated his administration's commitment to tackle the myriad of developmental challenges facing the State and called on Bayelsans to remain steadfast in their prayers for the administration.

Governor Dickson later inspected a guard of honour mounted by a detachment of the Nigeria Police, Bayelsa State Command at the Government House gate, Yenagoa.

On hand to receive the Governor were the State Deputy Governor, Rtd Rear Admiral Gboribiogha John Jonah, Secretary to State Government, Professor Edmund Allison-Oguru, some members of the State Executive Council, the Commissioner of Police, Bayelsa State Command, CP Kings Omire and other top Government functionaries.



Contractors handling various projects in Bayelsa State have been told to expedite work to ensure timely completion of their jobs.

Addressing the contractors at a meeting with the contractors in Government House, Governor Seriake Dickson said the call was borne out of his administration’s belief in aggressive development of the state.

The Governor who restated his administration’s determination to consolidate on the achievements recorded in the last one year, explained that the meeting was to enable government have first hand reports of the extent of work done, problems and prospects.

He stated that, he will personally lead a team on inspection visit some ongoing project sites including the ones inherited from the previous administration.

In his words, “I am quite pleased with the pace of work that I have seen, very soon a date will be communicated to you through the various supervisory ministries whereupon and embark upon on the site inspection of all major works including the ones we have inherited.”

The number one citizen of the state, who commended some of the contractors for their impressive performances, however expressed concern over the slow pace of work in some of the jobs and urged such contractors to show more commitment as government was not owing any contractor in the state and they have no excuse not to deliver.

“There are a few projects that are not meeting up with the pace but so far it’s been good but you can all do better. There is no contractor that we have given a job to that we are owing to the best of my knowledge. In this new Bayelsa if we are giving you a job, just know that we will fulfill our obligations.

“I like to enjoin you all to redouble your efforts, happily working together and with the cooperation we have received from the good people of our state and with the efforts of our security agencies you can see that the state has turned a new leaf in terms of security.

I am pleased that from all the construction sites where various forms of construction are going on in every community in this state, either we are building a school or residential quarters for teachers or we are building one health facility or road construction cutting across an area, so every community is touched one way or the other.”

Reminding the contractors of the recent weather forecast by the Nigeria Meteorological Agency (NIMET), Hon. Dickson noted that government would not allow any of its projects to suffer any setbacks due to floods like it happened last year.

Expressing his commitment to accelerate the pace of development in the State, Governor Dickson called on the contractors to redouble their pace of work to meet up completion deadlines or where possible surpass the expected milestones, assuring that government will not fail in its contractual obligations.