US Imposed Visa Restrictions On Nigerians Undermining Electoral Processes
United States has imposed visa restrictions on individuals who undermined democratic process during elections.
The United States on Monday imposed additional visa restrictions on Nigerians over election-related activities in the African nation, accusing them of being responsible for undermining the democratic process.
The Spokesperson of the Department of State, Morgan Ortagus, in a statement published on its website Monday, said the US was a steadfast supporter of Nigerian democracy, according to Reuters.
The restrictions were imposed on the individuals, who were not named, "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."
The statement reads: "The United States is a steadfast supporter of Nigerian democracy. We commend all those Nigerians who participated in elections throughout 2019 and have worked to strengthen Nigerian democratic institutions and processes.
"We remain committed to working together to advance democracy and respect for human rights and achieve greater peace and prosperity for both our nations. We condemn the acts of violence, intimidation, or corruption that harmed Nigerians and undermined the democratic process.
"As the Edo and Ondo State off-cycle elections near, we urge all stakeholders, including the Independent National Electoral Commission, the political parties, and the security services, to uphold the tenets of democracy and facilitate genuinely free and fair elections, conducted in an appropriately transparent and non-violent manner.
"In a statement on January 24, 2019, the U.S. Government said we would consider consequences – including visa restrictions – for individuals responsible for undermining the Nigerian democratic process or for organizing election-related violence. 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. These individuals have so far operated with impunity at the expense of the Nigerian people and have undermined democratic principles.
The US government noted that its decision reflects its commitment to working with the Nigerian government to realize its expressed commitment to end corruption and strengthen democracy, accountability, and respect for human rights.