The Centre for Social and Inter-Ethnic Cohesion (CENSIC) has called on the European Union (EU) to impose travel restrictions on Nigerians connected to violent activities in the just-concluded election in Edo State as well as upcoming elections in the country.
This call is coming on the heels of serious security and rigging concerns raised by Nigerians in the past and present elections in the country.
While commending the United States and the United Kingdom for considering travel ban and assets forfeiture for such individuals, the group also noted the need for extensive collaborations across international borders to bring perpetrators of such political violence in Nigeria to justice.
In a statement signed by the Director of Media, CENSIC, Mr. Wellington Olaiya, the Centre appealed to the EU to strengthen its ties with international media to be able to identify such individuals.
“The European Union would help strengthen local and international efforts at significantly reducing election violence in Nigeria, thereby managing the fragile stability in the West African region”, the statement read in part.
According to the CENSIC, this proactive action would not only serve as a deterrent to future engagements in election violence, but also mount serious pressure on Nigerians in the quest for peace and justice.
It would be recalled that the US had already placed restrictions on certain individuals, who undermined elections in Bayelsa and Kogi states, though they are yet to reveal those names.
The US ambassador to Nigeria, Mary Beth Leonard had last week stated that the confidentiality associated with visa applications was the reason a list of sanctioned Nigerians was not published.
CENSIC however demands that such sanctions must transcend visa bans not only on such individuals, but their immediate family members, assets’ seizures as well as publication of names of those affected.
In the same vein, the United Kingdom has concluded plans to restrict such individuals as well as seize their assets.