US announces visa ban on Nigerians undermining democracy

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Nigerians accused of undermining democracy face a visa ban from the United States.

While the names of those affected by the ban will not be revealed, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said in a statement on Wednesday, January 25, that it is part of the action to advance democracy and combat corruption in Nigeria.

Blinken also stated that some family members of those barred from entering the United States may face the same restrictions.

The statement was as follows:

“We are committed to supporting and advancing democracy in Nigeria and around the world. Today, I am announcing visa restrictions on certain Nigerians 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 as part of a policy to restrict visas for those suspected of undermining democracy in Nigeria.

“These restrictions may also apply to certain family members of such individuals. Additional individuals who undermine Nigeria’s democratic process, including in the run-up to, during, and after the 2023 elections, may be found ineligible for US visas under this policy.’

The visa restrictions announced today apply only to specific individuals and are not directed at the Nigerian people or the Nigerian government. The decision to impose visa restrictions reflects the United States’ commitment to assisting Nigerians in their efforts to combat corruption and strengthen democracy and the rule of law.