By Andy Chukwu
The local government elections in Bayelsa State on Saturday was largely characterised by voter apathy and boycott by the main opposition party in the state, All Progressives Congress (APC).
The opposition party had alleged that the Bayelsa State Independent Electoral Commission was constituted of card-carrying members of ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), who could not be trusted to conduct credible elections.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that in Yenagoa, Ogbia and Kolokuma-Opokuma Local Government Areas, markets and shops remained open while the polling stations were deserted.
Residents in Yenagoa, the state capital, shunned the restriction order on movement as commercial tricycle operators and taxis carried on with their business of transporting commuters to their destinations.
However, Mr Tonye Esenah, the Speaker of Bayelsa House of Assembly said that there was no voter apathy in Odi where he hails from.
“The issue of voter apathy did not happen here in Odi. I do not know the places you visited but here in Odi where I voted, there was a large turnout in all the three wards in Odi, Kolokuma-Opokuma Local Government Area.
“As of 11:00 a.m. voting ended and counting of votes was going on before I left the polling unit,” Esenah said.