(SERAP) has asked the United States President of the United States, Donald Trump, to request a comprehensive looters list from President Muhammdu Buhari, who will be meeting with him and ban those whose names are on the list from entering the U.S.
The commission said, “Exercise your constitutional powers under the Presidential Proclamation 7750 to instruct the US Secretary of State to temporarily ban those named on the list and their family members from entering the US, pending the final determination of the cases against them.”
In a statement by its Executive Director, Adetokunbo Mumuni urged President Trump to “use Presidential Proclamation 7750 to ban those indicted for allegedly stealing some public funds $2bn to buy 12 helicopters, four fighter jets and ammunition meant for the fight against the terrorist group Boko Haram. The imposition of temporary travel bans on senior public officials and others complicit in grand corruption is a preventive and not punitive measure.”
Presidential Proclamation of 2004 allows the US Department of State to deny visas to corrupt foreign officials, their families and friends.
“Applying the Presidential Proclamation 7750 would be very helpful to Nigeria’s efforts to fight grand corruption and end the entrenched culture of impunity of perpetrators in the country. It would also facilitate equivalent visa bans in other globally desirable locations as well. Limiting the abilities of suspected kleptocrats, their families, and friends to enter the US and enjoy their loot abroad will provide a significant crimp in their lifestyles.”
According to SERAP, “Imposing targeted anticorruption sanctions against those accused of grand corruption in Nigeria would help to deter corrupt behaviour by high-ranking public officials. Such sanctions would not violate due process and presumption of innocence principles if the reasons for the sanctions are communicated to those that may be affected. Also, the cases of those found not guilty of corruption can be revisited, since the proposed travel suspension would be temporary until the final determination of their cases.”
The organization said Trump should “apply the Presidential Proclamation 7750 as an instrument of foreign policy to promote targeted anti-corruption sanctions in Nigeria, just as the US has for many years applied targeted sanctions, including imposing travel restrictions on or freezing the assets of those accused of terrorism. Our request meets the requirements of Proclamation 7750 because grand corruption in Nigeria including the alleged stealing of public funds meant to fight Boko Haram has had serious adverse effects on U.S. foreign assistance goals in the country and undermined the stability of democratic institutions.”