Did Sylva pay congratulatory visit to Diri after Bayelsa guber poll?


A video of Timipre Sylva, former minister of state for petroleum resources, shaking hands with Douye Diri, governor of Bayelsa state, has surfaced online.

According to persons who posted the video, Sylva was congratulating Diri following the latter’s victory at the Bayelsa governorship election held on Saturday.

Diri, who contested on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), secured 175,196 votes to defeat Sylva of the All Progressives Congress (APC), who polled 110,108 votes.

The video has been gaining traction on social media, particularly on X, with thousands of views and engagements.

“Chief Timipre Sylva, the candidate of APC pays congratulatory visit to Governor Douye Diri of PDP. Pls do not die in their war. Imagine those who lost their lives for nothing. Really sad,” an X user who shared the video wrote.

In the extensively circulated video, Sylva can be seen vigorously shaking Diri while engaged in an inaudible conversation with him.

Another X user wrote: “Chief Timipre Sylva, the candidate of APC pays a congratulatory visit to Governor Douye Diri of PDP. Those who died in the course of the #BayelsaDecides2023 contest died for nothing. Good thing is that Governor Diri will concentrate on development of the state.”


Although there are no permanent enemies in politics, Sylva and Diri are momentarily at loggerheads over the outcome of the Bayelsa governorship poll.

On election day, Diri had accused Sylva of fanning the flames of violence during electoral processes.

“Timipre Sylva has been a violent person in every election. If you recall, the leader of the Ijaw nation, elder Edwin Clark, wrote a letter to him on why he has refused to drop his forceful and violent way of winning elections,” Diri said after casting his vote.

“However, God is on the throne and we’re standing against him in his violent way of winning elections.”

On his part, Sylva claimed that the PDP perpetrated violence during the poll. He also alleged that security agencies were “playing on the side of the PDP”.

“There is a lot of violence from the PDP trying to molest our voters with security (agents). In fact, in some cases, it is believed by our people that we are running the election, not against PDP, but against security (agents) but we are containing it,” Sylva said.


In a reverse image search on several screenshots from the alleged congratulation video, and the search results returned a TikTok account registered under the username GbaramatuVoiceTV.

The video was posted by GbaramatuVoiceTV in May 2023, six months before the governorship election in Bayelsa.

The video had an accompanying caption which reads: “HE Timipre Sylva attends HE Douye Diri’s father’s burial in Sampou.”

Diri’s father, the late Pa Abraham, a retired headmaster, passed away on February 12, 2023, at the age of 88. He was buried on May 6.

The GbaramatuVoiceTV TikTok account is also replete with other posts of various events, including weddings and anniversaries.


The video is old and not a congratulatory greeting from Sylva to Diri for winning the gubernatorial election.

The video was shot and posted in May 2023 when Slyva visited Diri to commiserate with him on the demise of the father.

While Diri has commended the electoral umpire for the conduct of the election, the APC in the state rejected his victory, demanding that INEC review the results within one week.


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