The Federal Government (FG) has called on the United States to review the travel ban and remove Nigeria from its list of visa restrictions.
The Minister of Interior, Rauf Aregbesola made this plea to the U.S ambassador, Mary Beth Leonard in Abuja during a visit.
In a statement released, Aregbesola said that Nigeria is a close ally of America and that the travel ban should be dropped because Nigeria had complied with most of the concerns raised by the United States.
“Nigeria is too important an ally of America to deserve such a sanction, We are positive that (the) visa restriction is a temporary one, it will soon be put behind us,” he said.
Although the statement did not really specify what Mrs Leonard’s response was, she was quoted by Reuters assuring her country’s determination to continue to collaborate with Nigeria.
As Nairametrics reported, the U.S. President Donald Trump included Nigeria, Eritrea, Sudan, Tanzania, Kyrgyzstan, and Myanmar, in an expanded version of his travel ban list weeks ago. The reason given for the ban by the US officials was that the countries failed to meet U.S. security and information-sharing standards, necessitating the new restrictions.
What you should know: The original travel ban was issued in 2017 and barred nearly all immigrants and travellers from seven countries with majority Muslim populations.
Although the US has already stated that the ban is temporary and would be lifted once Nigeria meets up to the conditions. One of the conditions involves Nigeria improving on its data intelligence such that it would be easy to investigate any immigrant wishing to visit the United States and meet information-sharing systems.
Nigeria has been having its own share of security challenges most especially the rising cases of insurgency by Boko Haram and Islamic State of West Africa Province (ISWAP) in the North East part of the country and attacks by criminals and bandits in different parts of the country.