The Federal government has asked the United States government to think carefully before granting the PDP presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, a visa in order create the impression of endorsing him for the 2019 election.
Atiku who has been accused of corruption and investigated by the United States government, has reportedly been barred from entering the US for many years. Recall that the Director-General of the Atiku Presidential Campaign Orgsanisation (APCO), Gbenga Daniel, in a recent interview, said Atiku has received signal from the US government to apply for visa which would be granted.
Reacting to this developmet, Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, at a press briefing in Abuja yesterday November 29th, said although the U.S. has the prerogative of whom to issue visa, it should be mindful of the timing, in order not to give the impression that Atiku has been endorsed by the U.S. government.
“We understand and appreciate the fact that it is the prerogative of the U.S. to grant a visa to anyone who applies. However, we want the U.S. to be neutral and be wary of taking any decision that will give the impression that they are favouring or endorsing one candidate over the other.
Impression must not be created that the U.S. government is endorsing one particular candidate over the other.
I am sure you will all recall the Jefferson’s case and the cold 90,000 U.S. dollar in fridge. We are not unaware that Atiku has engaged the services of some lobbyists to persuade the U.S. to issue (a) visa to him. Our position is that if the former vice president is seeking the U.S. visa we have no problem about it.
However, we want the U.S. government not to create the impression that it is endorsing one candidate over the other,’’ he said.