Following the initial cancellation of Governor Fayemi’s USA trip due to the refusal of the USA Embassy to issue the Governor entry visa into the USA, the members of the Nigeria Governors Forum have since overturned the Chairman’s [Fayemi] decision and unilaterally decided to embark on the trip to USA as previously scheduled.
The governor’s forum had previously scheduled for the trip as organised by Alhaji Aliko Dangote to visit with Bill and Melinda Gates on the 12th and 13th of November 2019. The meeting event concerns matters on Primary Healthcare Delivery.
Interestingly, as Fayemi became aware of his inability to travel to the USA for the November 12 and 13 engagement, he inadvertently cancelled the engagement – and immediately sent a circular to the entire Governors indicating that the engagement had been cancelled. Initially, the Governors appeared to comply with the directive in the circular. Hours later in addition to pleading from Aliko Dangote, the Governors made the decision to disregard Fayemi’s directive. They decided to attend engagement without their leader/chairman.
In a related development, the chief media whip for the the Nigeria Governors Forum reacted to 247ureports publication – USA Embassy Denies Fayemi Entry Visa, Govs Forum Cancels Trip To USA which blew the whistle on the denial of travel visa to the Chairman of Nigeria Governors Forum, Gov. Fayemi. The kernel of his response was “When the American Embassy indicated that the visa may not be ready by Friday, 8th November, Dr Fayemi retrieved his passport because of a crucial speaking engagement at the AfDB Africa Investment Forum in South Africa on Monday, 11th November 2019“.
There are issues rising from the response by the chief whip – in his defense of Gov Fayemi’s inability to enter the USA for a “previously” scheduled trip of which other Governor’s had already gotten clearance and visa for the same trip.
Firstly, a query raised by a political operative in Ekiti State exposes a possible discrepancy in the media whip’s denial. “So Fayemi was unaware of how long it takes for US visa to be issued? So Fayemi was unaware of the AfDB event of November 11 before submitting hid Passport to the US Embassy for Visa? After submitting your passport to the US Embassy for visa application, can you go their and withdraw the passport?”
It is expected for the Fayemi camp to deny the embarrassment meted on the Chairman of the Nigeria Governors Forum. It is also expected for the USA Embassy to release a statement clarifying whether the USA denied the Governor entry into the USA or whether the Governor withdrew his travel documents from the Embassy. The USA Embassy is yet to issue a statement.