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Trump proposes new travel bans on Nigeria

by Ayodeji Onibalusi
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American President, Donald Trump is proposing imposing new travel bans on Nigerians and citizens of some other countries. The travel ban will be enforced through an Executive Order.

After issuing travel bans to several majority-Muslim countries three years ago, Donald Trump is looking at adding seven more countries to the list, and Nigeria is among them.

The announcement may be made as soon as Monday.

While the list of countries that will be affected is not yet final and could see some countries dropped, people familiar with the issue said the countries under consideration are Nigeria, Belarus, Myanmar (aka Burma), Eritrea, Kyrgyzstan, Sudan and Tanzania.

Politico reports that the draft that the Trump administration is considering, the seven additional countries will be placed on immigration restrictions, but is not necessarily a full ban on all their citizens. According to Politico, the ban, for instance, place some government officials on some visa restrictions.

Speaking with news media on Tuesday, President Trump confirmed at Davos that he’s trying to add more countries to the travel ban, but did not specify what countries would be included.

The initial travel ban initiated three years ago was signed on January 27, 2017. Most of the countries affected by the travel ban then were majority-Muslim countries. However, several court challenges forced Donald Trump to adopt modifications to the policy.

According to a White House spokesman, Hogan Gidley, the travel ban has helped to protect America against terrorism and other security threats.

“The travel ban has been profoundly successful in protecting our country and raising the security baseline around the world,” Gidley said in a statement.

“While there are no new announcements at this time, common sense and national security both dictate that if a country wants to fully participate in the U.S. immigration programs, they should also comply with all security and counter-terrorism measures — because we do not want to import terrorism or any other national security threat into the United States.”

Nigeria has a solid relationship with the United States, with a very large diaspora community in the North American nation. While it’s still unclear in what ways the travel ban would affect Nigerians willing to travel to the United States, this could further strain relations with the two countries.

Most Nigerians now prefer to travel to Canada, a country with milder Visa requirements and an appetite for immigrants than the USA, to visiting the U.S. If the travel ban takes place, Nigerians would be forced to pick other North American countries over the USA, a nation that is highly desirable to immigrants because of its liberal culture and huge economy.

Nigeria is also a counter-terrorism partner with the United States.

However, on many occasions, President Trump have been reported to have shown his unwillingness to welcome Nigerians, the most populous black nation on earth, into the United States.

He was once accused of calling Nigeria and other African countries “shithole countries” and was also alleged to have said Nigerians will never “go back to their huts” in Africa once they enter the U.S. He denied making either of the statements.

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