By Chijindu Emeruwa
Ohanaeze Ndigbo Youth Council,(OYC), an Igbo socio-cultural organization, has lauded the United States of America for imposing visa ban on politicians undermining the Nigeria democratic process.
The Igbo group lamented that the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, Security agencies and the Judiciary, have continued to aid anti democratic forces in undermining the nation’s electoral process and revealed that it would furnish the US government with facts and details to extend its hammers on corrupt public office holders.
OYC, in a press statement signed by its President, Mazi Okechukwu Isiguzoro and Secretary General, Okwu Nnabuike, and issued on Friday, posited that the US move was true reflection of the wishes of majority of Nigeria citizenry and further urged the US government to extend the visa ban on sponsors of the nefarious killings across the country.
According to the Igbo youths, this travel ban and visa restrictions on these people shortlisted will strengthen all the democratic institutions in Nigeria and instill faith in the citizens that their votes will count in the future elections, and would as well, accelerates President Muhammadu Buhari-led federal government’s efforts to send a new electoral reform bill to the National Assembly and sign it into law.
Akelicious recalls that the United States of America has imposed visa ban on politicians, who it claimed undermined the conducts of the November 2019 governorship elections in Kogi and Bayelsa States.
This move is in the run-up to the September and October 2020 governorship polls in Edo and Ondo respectively. The spokesperson for the Department of State, Morgan Ortagus, disclosed this in a statement on Monday.
But, Ohanaeze in its press statement further said, “the US declaration has answered prayers of Nigerians over their continuous intimidation from sacred cows and untouchables, that had serially raped the people’s electoral verdicts at the polls through their nefarious activities and collaborations with INEC, Security agents and some judiciary officials.
“OYC had collected over 95,000 signatories from Igbo youths across seven Igbo speaking states, including Anioma in Delta and Rivers States, and others in diaspora, that endorsed the petition titled “Proponents of stolen mandates in Igboland. Ohanaeze Youth Council, is mandated to pursue vigorously these petitions against some Igbo politicians, who occupies some political offices through stolen mandates in Igboland. The petition urged for the extension of U.S travel ban and visa restrictions to these Igbo politicians”.
The Igbo socio cultural group, urged European Union and United Kingdom to replicate the same severe sanctions on indicted Igbo electoral offenders and riggers,to serve as a deterrent to others in the future.
Ohanaeze Youth claimed, “top of the list includes one sitting Governor, two former Governors, members of National Assembly and State House of Assembly’s members. The lists was sent to US Congress, European Union Parliament in Brussels, and others recently, afterwards, the electoral bill will guarantee electoral freedom and put the end of pronouncements of fraudulent election results against the collective will and verdicts of Nigerians, with stiff penalties for offenders and forestall politicians from using courts to get judgements against the people’s verdicts at the polls. Igbo youths will further pressurize the international community to extend the visa restrictions to those behind the sponsored killings of christians in Nigeria”.