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‘US Didn’t Deny Fayemi Visa’ — Governors’ Forum

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Nigeria Governors’ Form (NGF) on Saturday dismissed as untrue, a media report that the Unites States’ embassy recently turned down a visa request by Governor Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti State.

The forum admitted that Fayemi indeed applied for a US visa but withdrew the application having learnt that approval would take some time.

Spokesman for the NGF, Abdulrazaque Bello Barkindo, who described the media report as mischievous said: “Governor Fayemi, like every other Nigerian citizen intending to visit the US, applied for a visa, attended his interview and was requested to pay the statutory visa acceptance fee by the US Consulate.

“The Governor’s visa application was not denied. Anyone conversant with US Visa application procedure knows that applicants are now routinely taken through administrative processing before visas are issued.

“When the American Embassy indicated that the visa may not be ready by Friday, November 8, Dr Fayemi retrieved his passport because of a crucial speaking engagement at the AfDB Africa Investment Forum in South Africa on Monday, November 11, 2019.

“It is imperative to mention here that the NGF Chairman, Dr John Kayode Fayemi, only just returned from the United States where he attended the United Nation’s General Assembly where the NGF organized a high-level side meeting on the 27th of September 2019.

“It is also important, at this juncture, to caution journalists on the rush to print, as blatant mischief, laden with glaring untruths as contained in the 247Ureports narrative, can drag the journalism profession to disrepute. Knowing Dr Fayemi, it is virtually impossible to associate him with the uncouth behaviour that 247Ureports dramatized.

“Meanwhile, the trip to the United States is at the instance of the Dangote Foundation in concert with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and it is on course.

“The Aliko Dangote Foundation and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation have partnered for years on several global health and development initiatives in Nigeria. In partnership with the Nigeria Governors’ Forum, the two foundations are hosting a group of executive governors in Seattle to discuss how to expand support of routine immunization and polio eradication efforts to help strengthen Nigeria’s primary health care system and the Human Capital Development agenda.

“The visit will foster a deeper understanding of the State Government’s development priorities within the context of the Human Capital Development framework and harvest perspectives to better inform joint strategies for greater impact and progress in meeting the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).”

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