The United States government has imposed visa restrictions on Nigerians for their actions surrounding the November 2019 Kogi and Bayelsa State elections, and in the run-up to the September and October 2020 Edo and Ondo State elections.
This was announced in a statement on Monday by the secretary of state, Mike Pompeo.
The statement read partly, “In July 2019, we announced the imposition of visa restrictions on Nigerians who undermined the February and March 2019 elections.
“Today, the Secretary of State is imposing additional visa restrictions on individuals for their actions surrounding the November 2019 Kogi and Bayelsa State elections and in the run-up to the September and October 2020 Edo and Ondo State elections.”
Although the US Government did not reveal the identities of those who have been banned, it said the decision reflects its commitment to strengthening democracy in Nigeria.
“The Department of State emphasises that the actions announced today are specific to certain individuals and not directed at the Nigerian people. This decision reflects the Department of State’s commitment to working with the Nigerian government to realise its expressed commitment to end corruption and strengthen democracy, accountability, and respect for human rights,” the statement read.
The US said it remained a steadfast supporter of Nigerian democracy and commended all those Nigerians who participated in elections throughout 2019 and have worked to strengthen democratic institutions and processes.
It condemned the acts of violence, intimidation, or corruption that harmed Nigerians and undermined the democratic process.