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Oshiomhole, Ganduje, Yahaya Bello on US visa ban list, as el-Rufai’s sanction extended

A former governor of Edo State and former National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, is among top Nigerians slammed with a visa ban by the United States Government, on Monday, it is learnt.

Also on the list is Governor Abdullahi Ganduje of Kano State and his Kogi State counterpart, Alhaji Yahaya Bello.

Governor Nasir el-Rufai of Kaduna State on the other hand had his own visa ban extended.

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He has been banned from entering the US since 2010 over a graft case.

According to US officials, more Nigerian politicians may be included on the visa ban list after the Edo governorship election if they are involved in electoral malpractice.

Those affected by the latest visa ban have received notification by email and/or text messages, it was learnt.

A statement by spokesperson for the Department of States, Morgan Ortagus, on Monday, said those issued visa bans received the sanction for undermining democracy in Nigeria.

Ortagus’ statement reads, “In July 2019, we announced the imposition of visa restrictions on Nigerians who undermined the February and March 2019 elections.

“Today, the Secretary of State is imposing additional visa restrictions on individuals for their actions surrounding the November 2019 Kogi and Bayelsa states elections and in the run up to the September and October 2020 Edo and Ondo states elections.

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“These individuals have so far operated with impunity at the expense of the Nigerian people and have undermined democratic principles.

“The Department of State emphasises that the actions announced today are specific to certain individuals and not directed at the Nigerian people.

“This decision reflects the Department of State’s commitment to working with the Nigerian Government to realise its expressed commitment to end corruption and strengthen democracy, accountability, and respect for human rights.”