……….those engaged in 2010 electoral violence on list
By Harrison Arubu
The U.S. Government has imposed visa restrictions on “individuals responsible for undermining the Nigerian democratic process”.
A spokesperson of the U.S. Department of State, Ms Morgan Ortagus, who announced this in a statement on Tuesday, said the action applied to those responsible for election-related violence.
Ortagus said the unidentified individuals had “operated with impunity at the expense of the Nigerian people and undermined democratic principles and human rights”.
News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that no fewer than 39 persons died in violence related to the last general elections in the country.
The action, according to the spokesperson, is in fulfillment of the U.S. government’s earlier promise to consider sanctions against anti-democratic forces, including organisers of election-related violence in the country.
“In a Jan. 24 statement, the U.S. government said that we would consider consequences – including visa restrictions – for individuals responsible for undermining the Nigerian democratic process or for organising election-related violence.
“To that end, the Secretary of State is imposing visa restrictions on Nigerians believed to be responsible for, or complicit in, undermining democracy in Nigeria.
“These individuals have operated with impunity at the expense of the Nigerian people and undermined democratic principles and human rights,” she said.