The Bayelsa State chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC), on Tuesday, lamented that the West African Examination Council (WAEC) has withheld the results of the state’s indigenous candidates.
The party said the examination body took the action following the inability of the state government led by Mr. Seriake Dickson, to pay the required fees of the candidates.
But the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) fired back describing the position of the APC as a mischievous and total display of ignorance.
APC in a statement signed by its Publicity Secretary, Mr. Panebi Fortune, regretted that under Dickson a generation of youths was on the verge of being wasted with the seizure of the results.
“WAEC had refused to release the results over unpaid debts owed it by the Bayelsa state government. By implication, pupils who made respective cut-off marks in the last Unified Tertiary and Matriculation Examination (UTME) might forfeit their admissions”, the party said.
The party berated Dickson, accusing him of deliberately scuttling the destinies of bright children who are leaders of tomorrow.
APC said: ”While the situation of the non-payment of teachers’ salaries in Bayelsa continues to be an embarrassment to all and sundry even as the governor’s deliberate impoverishment of public servants has now become an ego issue on his part, a far more dangerous twist is looming in the education sector in Bayelsa state.
“This is the seizure of the results of secondary school pupils by WAEC over the state government’s refusal to pay statutory dues.
“This is a brazen act, the height of irresponsibility on the part of a government. To say the least, Governor Dickson is deliberately wasting away a generation of tomorrow’s leaders due to his inaction in this regard.
“While we call on well meaning individuals to prevail on the governor, we sympathize with the parents of the pupils for this pain, an ordeal not worth it for whatever reason.
“To the affected pupils, while we pray for a divine intervention in this regards, we share in your distress, despair, and disappointment”.
The party also noted that public primary and secondary schools in Bayelsa had yet to resume for the 2016/2017 session because of the failure of the state government to settle the seven-month salary arrears it owed teachers.
But the PDP in a statement signed by its state Chairman, Mr. Moses Cleopas, said the allegation was a deliberate deceit to score cheap political points.
Cleopas said the APC lacked moral justification to criticise the Dickson’s administration, because “what Bayelsa State is going through is as a result of the misrule by the APC-led government at the centre.”
He said the misrule of APC “has completely ruined the nation’s economy, through its inability to initiate policies to reinvigorate the economy.”
According to him, the situation in Bayelsa State was made worse by the financial recklessness and huge debt burden left behind by the immediate past administration in the state, which was under the leadership of Chief Timipre Sylva.
He said that the PDP administration had spent N100bn to service the bond liability it inherited from that administration.
Cleopas said that despite the huge debt burden it inherited from Sylva’s administration, the PDP government under Dickson had through careful application of the scarce resources at its disposal, kept the machinery of the government running.
He said the people of the state including the parents of the affected candidates understood the level of wastage in the Chief Sylva years.
He called on the APC leadership at the state and federal levels to apologise to Bayelsans and Nigerians for subjecting the people to untold hardship.
According to him, the “Dickson-led administration will not allow itself to be distracted by charlatans, who have proved time and again, that they do not have anything positive to offer the people of the state”.
APC, PDP trade words as WAEC withholds Bayelsa’s results Reviewed by Link Naija on 11:57 Rating: