A senator representing Bayelsa east, Ben Murray Bruce, has withdrawn from the race to return to the Senate for a second term in 2019.
He made this known few hours to the senatorial primary election of People's Democratic Party.
"Even with the support of my party at the national and state levels, with the full backing of my state government and leadership, as a man of honour interested in the well being of my people, I hereby announce my withdrawal from the senatorial race," Bruce said on his Facebook page.
He noted that he was stepping down because of the "existing local rotational arrangement of over 20 years beginning with the late Great Chief Melford Okilo, by which arrangement the Senatorial seat rotates per local government area among the three councils for four years in the Senatorial District."
A Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Mr Biriyai Dambo, and the former Deputy Speaker of the Bayelsa State House of Assembly, Chief Ayebaesin Edoghotu-Omoh, last September purchased and submitted the PDP nomination forms to replace Bruce.
Separately, they said it was high time the occupier of the seat came from another council area, in fulfilment of the zoning arrangement in the senatorial district.
Over the years, the seat has always been held in rotation by the three Local Government Areas, which are Ogbia, Nembe and Brass.