Shortly after announcing a visa ban against Nigerians accused of truncating democracy in the country, the United States government has expressed full confidence in the Independent National Electoral Commission’s ability to conduct a successful election in 2023.
Speaking at the 20th Daily Trust Dialogue in Abuja, Mary Beth Leonard, U.S ambassador to Nigeria said they’ve got no favourite candidate but are only seeking a peaceful and transparent election in Nigeria.
“The United States supports credible and transparent elections that will reflect the will of the people in a process that will be conducted peacefully. We have confidence in INEC to conduct the elections.
“2023 is an opportunity for Nigeria to claim its place as the democratic leader in Africa. We favour no candidate. We favour open and transparent elections conducted in a peaceful process. This is the foundation of democracy and legitimate transfer of power.
“It’s good that we reflect on the fact that since 1999, Nigerians voters have successfully exercise their democratic rights. For more than two decades, Nigeria has demonstrated to Africa and the world its strong commitment to peaceful and transparent elections.”
The U.S ambassador added that while democracy is being tampered with in many places in Africa, the practice is deepening in Nigeria.