Ahead of Saturday’s rescheduled governorship and House of Assembly elections, former President Goodluck Jonathan has called on politicians to bear in mind that leadership is not by force.

He advised them to shun politics of desperation and killing.

The former president spoke at Sampou community in the Kolokuma/Opokuma Local Government Area of Bayelsa State shortly after paying a condolence visit to Governor Douye Diri over the demise of his father, Pa Abraham Diri, on Wednesday.

According to him, politics should be about service and not about self, urging politicians to wait for God’s time to get into leadership positions.

A statement on Thursday by Diri’s Chief Press Secretary, Daniel Alabrah, quoted the former president to have said that in a democracy the people play a critical role, wondering why those who aspire to lead want to force themselves on the people.

He said, “Leadership is not by force. It is about serving the people. So, if you want to lead the people, you cannot kill them before you lead them.

“In Bayelsa, the challenges will be minimal because we do not have governorship election on Saturday. But I urge our people to conduct themselves well.”

Speaking on the late Pa Diri, Jonathan said the death of a parent was painful but urged the family of the departed to take solace in the worthy legacies he left behind.

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“When you go for condolence visit, sometimes you lack words. We are lucky that our father lived for 88 years but that is not the most important (point). What you will be remembered for is what matters. From the messages so far, it is clear he lived a worthy life. He had good qualities that probably helped him to produce a governor. We have come to join the governor and members of his family and community to console you and the rest of the family,” Jonathan said.

Responding, the governor described the visit of the former president as special, saying his family and community were strengthened by his presence.

Diri said he was overwhelmed with joy by the former president’s show of love, noting that Jonathan was among the first people to call him when his father died.

The governor stressed the need for the people of Bayelsa to exhibit same brotherly love and unity in order to move the state forward.

While describing Jonathan’s rise to the position of President as divine, Diri said the people of Bayelsa were proud of him and his achievements in politics.

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