Olawale Ajimotokan in Abuja
Minister of Information, Lai Mohammed, has fired a riposte at the United States of America for issuing a travel warning to its citizens against travelling to 20 of the 36 states of Nigeria. The report released by the Department of State last week advised Americans of the risk of kidnapping, robberies, and other armed attacks in north, central and southern parts of the country.
Mohammed scorned the report while hosting a delegation of the Association of Tourism Practitioners of Nigeria (ATPN).
He said the report was in bad taste as it projected Nigeria in negative light to the rest of the world, insisting the country is safe for investment and tourism.
According to him, in spite of the security challenges in the Niger Delta region and the North- east, Nigeria remains a beautiful environment inhabited by people of acclaimed quality.
Mohammed, who warned the Nigerian media to desist from negative news capable of hurting domestic tourism, faulted the report and insisted that the US is not insulated from security issues as it is faced with gun laws, indiscriminate killings of African- Americans by police that fuel rioting and wanton shooting of school children across the country.
“There was a report in the media that 20 states out 36 states in Nigeria are not safe. Who said so? The United States! Is there any week that they are not killing people in the US, either through shooting in schools, on the drive ways or suicide attacks or by race motivated killings? How can you tell us that 20 out 36 Nigerian states are not safe? It is just not correct. There is no part of Nigeria that is not safe today. If they are telling their people not to come to Nigeria, it is not for our media to help them in echoing it, ‘’ Muhammed said.
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