Visa Ban: FG Warns UK, US Against Disrespecting Nigeria’s Sovereignty
The Federal Government has warned the United States and United Kingdom not to disrespect the sovereignty of the country by judging over the conduct of Nigerians in the country.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs in a statement by the ministry’s spokesperson, Ferdinand Nwonye said the US and UK have expressed their intention to take punitive measures against those they decide will be involved in what they termed as undermining democracy adding that “It would be considered disrespectful of the sovereignty of Nigeria for any outside authority to sit in judgment over the conduct of our citizens and apply punitive measures such as visa restriction, unilaterally” .
“While we appreciate the support and encouragement of our international partners such as the EU, we urge our equally valued partners such as the UK and US to cooperate with our relevant agencies by providing them whatever concrete evidence of observed misconduct to allow our laws and regulations to take their course” the statement added.
The statement further noted that the Nigerian Government has taken note of the concerns of some of our partners, specifically the US and UK governments regarding the elections in Edo and Ondo States.
It also stressed that it was important to highlight that the responsibility for the conduct of elections in Nigeria “solely” resides with the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and State Independent Electoral Commissions.
“The Federal Government, and especially the President, is committed to providing all necessary logistic, financial and security support to the electoral process .
“The President has continually urged all parties and contestants to peacefully conduct themselves before, during and after the elections, and supported patriotic non-governmental initiatives such as the Abdusalami Abubakar Peace Committee .
“Furthermore, it should be noted that there are ample provisions in our laws to sanction violators and perpetrators of electoral violence and fraud .
” Finally, Nigeria expresses solidarity with the government and people of the United States of America as regards their forthcoming election which we hope will be free from interference and violence” the statement said.