Former Aviation minister, Femi Fani-Kayode, has told the United States to allow the court to determine those that undermined Nigeria’s democracy.
US on Monday announced through the Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, that it had placed visa restrictions on some Nigerians who undermined the 2023 general elections of February and March.
“The United States is committed to supporting and advancing democracy in Nigeria and around the world,” Blinken said.
“Today, I am announcing that we have taken steps to impose visa restrictions on specific individuals in Nigeria for undermining the democratic process during Nigeria’s 2023 elections cycle.”
Fani-Kayode while reacting said that those that have imposed a visa ban on some “selected Nigerians” for allegedly “undermining democracy” and “rigging elections” are perfectly within their rights to do so because it is their country and they can do as they please.
“We should lose no sleep over that because the Nigerian people, a great and sovereign people who belong to a great and sovereign nation, spoke loudly and clearly and made their legitmate choices during the course of a set of free, fair and credible elections,” Fani-Kayode tweeted.
“Wherever any of those elections may have been rigged or democracy undermined can only be properly determined by our election tribunals and courts after all the facts and evidence have been adduced, examined and determined and not by any distant and/or partisan foreign government or power.
“It is also my view that foreign policy which ought to be based on the principle of equality of nations and conducted on the basis of reciprocity, requires the Nigerian Federal Government to consider the possibility of doing the same to nationals of those that have implemented and announced this measure and issue a visa ban to any foreign citizen or member of any corporate entity or institution that may have indulged in undermining democracy or rigging elections in either their own or any other country in the world over the last 25 years.”
He also said that the irony of it all is that the President whose government has issued a visa ban on selected Nigerians for rigging has himself been accused of election rigging by his predecessor in office and millions of his fellow country men.
“The truth is that the world is becoming less tolerant of double standards, double speak, neo-colonialism, pseudo-imperialism, the hypocrisy and interference of big, rich and powerful countries, who believe that they own and rule the world, in the affairs of less rich and less powerful ones and the practice of what Lord Palmerston, Great Britain’s 18th century Foreign Minister impudently and arrogantly enunciated and described as the implementation of a ‘paternalistic foreign policy’.
“African leaders generally and Nigerian leaders particularly are not mice. They do not scramble and scatter at the sound of a gong and they do not quiver or wet their pants in the face of a gratutious insult, threat or storm.”