The United States Government on Tuesday announced visa restrictions on some Nigerian politicians who were involved in trying to undermine democracy in the 2019 general elections.
Names of the affected politicians and their parties were mentioned but the US government claimed the affected “individuals have operated with impunity at the expense of the Nigerian people…”
“The Secretary of State is imposing visa restrictions on Nigerians believed to be responsible for, or complicit in, undermining democracy in Nigeria,” the US State Department spokesman Morgan Ortagus said in a statement on Tuesday.
“These individuals have operated with impunity at the expense of the Nigerian people and undermined democratic principles and human rights.”
According to The Guardian NG, Nigeria’s last general elections were one of the bloodiest Africa has seen in 2019 and was marred by voter apathy. The election handed President Muhammadu Buhari another four-year term in office.
His opponent and former ally Atiku Abubakar said the president and his ruling All Progressives Congress rigged the election in their favour.
Atiku claimed he won the election based on the record his camp said it retrieved from Nigeria’s electoral body’s server.
But the much-maligned Independent National Electoral Commission disputed the claims.
“This decision reflects the Department of State’s commitment to working with the Nigerian government to realize its expressed commitment to end corruption and strengthen democracy, accountability, and respect for human rights,” Ortagus said.