Obama to Restrict Visa to Nigerian Politicians Over Alam’s Pardon


There are strong indications that President Barrack Obama-led administration is set to slam visa restrictions on top Nigerian government officials in protest against the state pardon granted a convicted criminal, ex-Governor Dieprieye Alameiyeiseigha due to his closeness to President Goodluck Jonathan.

naijacelebritynews.blogspot.com gathered that the US believes that if no decisive action is taken, more high profile thieves will be pardoned so long as they are close to the President and his associates.
A diplomatic source told Punch that the US government was miffed by the Nigerian Government’s decision to summon its Deputy Head of Mission for condemning the pardon granted Alamieyeisegha.The source said, “There are a lot of options open to Washington. For one, if this matter is not resolved, they can issue visa restrictions on government officials and then follow it up with other sanctions recognised within international law.”

The source said Nigeria currently stands at a disadvantage if the visa restrictions is imposed. “Your country stands at a disadvantage because international opinion weighs heavily against it on this one (state pardon).

“Financial crime, especially money laundering, is closely linked to drug trade and drug trade is linked to terrorism; the whole world is affected by it. So, if any government is seen to be condoning financial crimes in any form, it stands the risk of international isolation,” the source added.

Also, a Presidency source, who pleaded anonymity, told Punch that proper consultations were not held before the decision to pardon Alamieyeseigha and Shettima was taken. 

The Presidency source said, “It is unfortunate that proper consultations were not held before the decision was taken. Normally, when decisions like this which have the potential of attracting international interest are to be taken, a small team made up of lawyers from the Foreign Ministry and civil society is set up.

“The team carries out a research, considers the likely repercussions and prepares a well coordinated response should situations like what we are witnessing today arise but this was not done.

“You cannot blame the US and other western countries…because, they provide funding for training and other logistics to assist Nigeria deal with corruption.

“To make matters worse, Alamieyeseigha has a money laundering case in a court in the United Kingdom; there is also this issue of him jumping bail. It’s really complicated.”

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