With 30 days to the commencement of this year’s general elections, the United States has imposed visa restrictions on specific individuals accused of sabotaging Nigeria’s Democracy.
A statement by the US Secretary of State, Antony J. Blinken, on Wednesday, said, “We are committed to supporting and advancing democracy in Nigeria and around the world. Today, I am announcing visa restrictions on specific individuals in Nigeria for undermining the democratic process in a recent Nigerian election.
“Under Section 212(a)(3)C) of the Immigration and Nationality Act, these individuals will be found ineligible for visas to the United States under a policy to restrict visas of those believed to be responsible for, or complicit in, undermining democracy in Nigeria.
“Certain family members of such persons may also be subject to these restrictions. Additional persons who undermine the democratic process in Nigeria—including in the lead-up to, during, and following Nigeria’s 2023 elections—may be found ineligible for U.S. visas under this policy.
“The visa restrictions announced today are specific to certain individuals and are not directed at the Nigerian people or the Government of Nigeria. The decision to impose visa restrictions reflects the commitment of the United States to support Nigerian aspirations to combat corruption and strengthen democracy and the rule of law,” the release concluded.
The presidential and National Assembly polls will hold on 25th February, while the Governorship and State Assemblies polls had been fixed for 11th March, 2023, according to the timetable of the Independent National Electoral Commission.