‘Alamieyeseigha Died Of High Blood Pressure,Diabetes Complications’ | Independent Newspapers Limited
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‘Alamieyeseigha Died Of High Blood Pressure,Diabetes Complications’

Posted: Oct 11, 2015 at 8:15 pm   /   by   /   comments (0)

*He had chronic kidney disease

By Igoniko Oduma,


Bayelsa State Government said on Sunday that the former governor of the state, Diepreye Alamieyeseigha, died of high blood pressure and diabetes-related complications.

“Chief DSP Alamieyeseigha died of complications arising from high blood pressure  and diabetes which affected his kidney”, Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Esueme-Dan Kikile , said in a text message to our correspondent on Sunday.

“He had chronic kidney disease which was aggravated by the sudden rise in his blood pressure and the long diabetes”, Kikile added.

Alamieyeseigha died on Saturday, October 10,2015, at the University of Port Harcourt Teaching Hospital (UPTH) in neighbouring Rivers State.

The state government officially  confirmed his death at 7:14pm on Saturday, saying “he died after a brief illness” and that a full statement would be issued later.

He would have clocked 63 on November 16, 2015.

Alamieyeseigha was  the first civilian governor of Bayelsa State. He governed from May 29,1999 to December 9,2005, when he was impeached in controversial circumstances  by the state House of Assembly over allegations bordering on gross misconduct.

His political travails  began at the Heathrow Airport, London, in September 2005 when he was apprehended by the London Metropolitan Police on allegations of money laundering.

A total of £1m cash was said to have been found in his London home while another £1.8m ($3.2m) was allegedly found in his bank accounts.

Apparently sensing danger if he stayed back in London to wait and face trial to clear his name, Alamieyeseigha pulled the wool over the eyes of the police and escaped from London in December 2005.

Reports at the time had suggested that he disguised himself as a woman in his desperate bid to return to Nigeria.

Alamieyeseigha hailed from Amassoma in Southern Ijaw Local Government Area in Bayelsa Central Senatorial District.

Among the significant developments he brought to his community was the siting of the state-owned Niger Delta University (NDU),Wilberforce Island.

He was popularly called and addressed as the ‘Governor-General of Ijaw Nation’ and also bagged the traditional title of ‘Ganuwan Katsina’ from the government and people of Katsina when he served as governor of Bayelsa.

Alamieyeseigha, on July 26,2007, pleaded guilty before a Nigerian court to allegations of corruption and was sentenced to two years in jail.

However, the two sentences slammed on him were primed to run concurrently and the period  was calculated from the time of his arrest which began two years before the sentences were pronounced, making his term very short.

He was eventually released few hours after he was taken to prison on July 27 and was granted state pardon by his former deputy and Nigeria’s former President, Goodluck Jonathan, on March 12,2013.

But the Government of the United Kingdom penultimate week requested the Federal Government of Nigeria to extradite him to the United Kingdom to face charges of money laundering.

Among the flurry of reactions to the UK’s extradition request on Alamieyeseigha, the Ijaw Youth Council (IYC) faulted the request, saying it was politically-motivated and influenced by the President Buhari-led Federal Government of Nigeria.

IYC in statement by its spokesman, Eric Omare, also fingered former President Olusegun Obasanjo of having a hand in the recent extradition ambush on Alamieyeseigha.

It said the gang up against Alamieyeseigha was based on his recent remarks on his past ordeal and his consistent opposition to the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC).

“The request is politically motivated and instigated by the Buhari led federal government. The government of the United Kingdom is just been used as a subterfuge”, it stated.

In the current  run-up to the December 5 governorship election in Bayelsa, Alamieyeseigha had been a strong voice for the re-election of the incumbent governor, Seriake Dickson, on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

He had argued that Bayelsa could not afford to be changing governors so frequently without a sitting governor enjoying two tenures of eight years as prescribed by the country’s constitution, stressing that the APC “is alien to Bayelsa”.

Governor Dickson has reacted to  Alamieyeseigha’s death describing it as a personal loss to him, the government and people of the state.

Dickson in a statement Saturday evening by his Chief Press Secretary, Daniel Iworiso-Markson, said  Alamieyeseigha was a strong pillar of support to his restoration government.

He stressed  that his demise was “a very painful and monumental loss to the entire Ijaw nation, which he has always stood firm for in all its ramifications”.

The state government  also commiserated with his wife, Margret, his immediate family, the Alamieyeseighas, the entire people of the state,noting that the Ijaw nation had lost a rare gem.