Former Vice-President Atiku Abubakar has denied that he and his family members were under financial surveillance. Atiku said the report making the rounds that he was on U.S. watch list was an old story, which, he said, was equally made before the February 23, 2019 presidential election.
In a statement by his media adviser, Paul Ibe, the former presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) described the story as “recycled and regurgitated lies.
” “For the avoidance of doubt, Atiku Abubakar is not under any U.S. watch list, neither has he been charged, or will ever be charged by the United States Justice Department or any other in a foreign jurisdiction,” he said.
According to the statement, to put lie to the publication, Atiku applied for and got a U.S. visa, which enabled him to embark on a visit to the United States on January 17, 2019. “He stayed at a hotel, just miles to the United States Department of Justice. “Atiku Abubakar, in the course of that trip, was also received in audience by officials of the United States government,” the statement noted.
It added that the allegations were meant to divert the attention of Nigerians from the recent statement by the U.S. Secretary of State, Mr. Mike Pompeo, announcing visa and travel bans for certain unnamed individuals.
“Moreover, the timing of this report, less than 24 hours after the Edo State gubernatorial elections, should give some thought to thinking people. “And considering the season that we are in, more of such jaundiced stories seeking to discredit Atiku Abubakar would come,” the statement warned.
It stated that the former vice president and every member of his family keep a clean business portfolio that has nothing to do with government resources and in conformity with local and foreign laws of respective countries.