US to Impose Visa Ban on Electoral Offenders in Lagos, Kano and Others
Following the violence, intimidation and malpractice that marred both the general elections in Nigeria, the United States has stated that it will impose a visa ban on anyone found wanting of undermining the electoral process in Nigeria.
The US Government said it witnessed firsthand incidents of voter intimidation and violence in the governorship and house of assembly elections held nationwide in Nigeria on March 18th.
A statement issued by the US Embassy in Nigeria however commended the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) over the marked improvement in the conduct of the elections.
The US government nonetheless urged the Federal Government to probe the reports of violence while it threatened to impose a visa ban on all individuals found culpable in the efforts at undermining the process.
The statement read: “Nigeria carried out the second round of its electoral process with gubernatorial and state assembly elections on March 18.
“The United States is deeply troubled by the disturbing acts of violent voter intimidation and suppression that took place during those polls in Lagos, Kano, and other states. Members of the U.S. diplomatic mission observed the elections in Lagos and elsewhere and witnessed some of these incidents first-hand.
“We call on Nigerian authorities to hold accountable and bring to justice any individuals found to have ordered or carried out efforts to intimidate voters and suppress voting during the election process.
“The United States likewise will consider all available actions, including additional visa restrictions, on individuals believed to be responsible for, or complicit in, undermining the democratic process in Nigeria”.