The United States on Monday said it has imposed visa bans on Nigerians, who disrupted the recent 2023 General Elections in the country.
In a statement on the US State Department website, Secretary of State Antony Binken said “the United States is committed to supporting and advancing democracy in Nigeria and around the world. Today, I am announcing that we have taken steps to impose visa restrictions on specific individuals in Nigeria for undermining the democratic process during Nigeria’s 2023 elections cycle.”
He explained that the visa ban is specific to certain individuals and is not directed at the Nigerian people or the Government of Nigeria as a whole.
The statement said these individuals, under US Immigration and Nationality Act, will be subject to restrictions on visas to the United States under a policy covering those believed to be responsible for, or complicit in, undermining democracy.
“These individuals have been involved in intimidation of voters through threats and physical violence, the manipulation of vote results, and other activity that undermines Nigeria’s democratic process,” Mr Blinken said.
The decision to take steps to impose visa restrictions, he said, reflects the continued commitment of the United States to support Nigerian aspirations to strengthen democracy and the rule of law.
The statment failed to name the Nigerians affected by the latest visa ban. however some Nigerians including controversial Lagos bus transport chief, Musiliu Akinsanya, popularly known as MC Oluomo, were caught on video threatening voters from a particular ethnic group with violence.