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Visa Ban: U.S. Compiles List Of Corrupt Nigerians
President Barack Obama has authorized the State Department to revoke the visas of more former government officials and their close relatives over their role in the controversy that surrounded the health of former President Umaru Yar’Adua and the looting of the nation’s treasury.
Washington had also beamed its searchlight on several top Nigerian officials who were named in the Halliburton bribery scandal preparatory to bringing charges. Already, the search had also been expanded to include some officials who served under former president Olusegun Obasanjo and those said to have benefited from several deals within the past 20 years.
White House sources said those affected include close security aides to the late Nigerian leader, some serving governors and assistants “who failed to fully brief relevant authorised government officials and institutions about the health of the late president.”
Also affected by the ban are former and serving government and political party officials who had been tried and convicted of corruption or abuse of office. The White House said some Nigerian officials benefited financially from the ordeal of President Yar’Adua and should be made to account for their roles in the controversy.
“We know Mr. Yar’ Adua was not in a position to discharge his duties while in hospital in Saudi Arabia, but certain decisions and expenditures were made with his authority and some officials should be held responsible,” a senior administration spokesman stated.
Mr. Obama said the new directive was in “pursuant to Presidential Proclamation 770 which authorized all America institutions to deny entry into the United States, persons and their relations with links to corruption.” Already, the administration last week revoked the visa of former Justice Minister, Michael Aondoakaa, over his role in the power play during Mr. Yar’Adua’s medical trip to Saudi Arabia.