Alamieyeseigha’s pardon: US remains adamant

By VICTORIA OJEME

ABUJA—The United States government has said that it has not changed its objection to the presidential pardon granted former Bayelsa governor, Deprieye Alamieyesegha.

The US government had recently condemned the pardon granted the former governor, insisting that the gesture was a set back on the war against corruption.

Speaking in Abuja, yesterday, during a teleconference on US-Nigeria Binational Commission, Political Counsellor, Embassy of the United States of America, Gregory Lawless, said “the situation has not changed”.

He, however, stressed that the objection to the pardon and Federal Government rebuke not withstanding, the relationship between the two countries remains strong.

He said: “We have a very mature relationship. So we can recognize our differences and opinions on issues. We are moving on as we have a lot of things to do”.

On the achievement of the bi-national commission, Lawless said the commission had successfully integrated civil society into the electoral process prior to the 2011 elections.

He also noted that the commission, among other things, had been able to sustain and elevated dialogue with energy sector officials on energy policy reforms to increase investment.

US and Nigeria, Lawless further said had also agreed to explore a partnership with the Nigerian Army to build its civil affairs capacity to enhance trust between Nigeria’s citizens and the military.

He stated that the energy and investment working group has focused primarily on reform of Nigeria’s power and hydrocarbon sectors.

He added tha: “The United States is providing policy support to strengthen Nigeria’s domestic agricultural policies.  The United States supports efforts to expand agricultural lending and otherwise improve private agriculture sector growth”.

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