Nigeria: Why We Won't Name Nigerian Election Riggers On Visa Restrictions - U.S.

Passport visa stamp
17 September 2020

The United States on Wednesday said it would not disclosed the identities of Nigerian politicians on its visa ban list because of the confidentiality of US visa processes.

The US had on Monday slammed visa restrictions on Nigerians it said undermined democratic process during the November 2019 governorship election in Kogi and Bayelsa states and in the run up to the September and October 2020 Edo and Ondo State elections.

The American government, however, did not disclose the names of those on the visa ban list.

The US Ambassador to Nigeria, Mary Beth Leonard, said the affected politicians would be denied visa whenever they apply to travel to the US.

The envoy spoke in Abuja at the end of the inaugural consular meeting with Nigeria officials to resolve the listing of Nigeria among countries placed on immigration restrictions.

She said: "US visa processes are in fact confidential and so we do not publish a list, we do not make public who it is that would be subjected to this sanction.

"An individual who intends to travel or apply for visa would be refused and impeded but it is not something that we advertise, who these individuals are.

"Anyone who had been involved with election processes in Nigeria should reflect upon that notorious behaviour in this regards may have the consequences for their ability to travel to United States."

On those who might have been denied, she said: "There are people who we believe merit that treatment and should those people seek to travel or apply for visa it will apply to them."

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