The US Embassy in Nigeria has announced a closure of its Lagos and Abuja offices due to the ongoing government shutdown in its country.

The closure will affect thousands seeking to apply for, or renew their visas, as their appointments would have to be rescheduled.

In a post on its official Facebook page, the embassy said the both offices would re-open once the shutdown is resolved.

“Due to the current U.S. government shutdown, the American Centers located in the Embassy, Abuja and Consulate General, Lagos are unfortunately closed,” the post read.

“They will re-open once the U.S. government shutdown is resolved. Sorry for any inconvenience to our valued patrons.”

In US politics, a government shutdown occurs when congress fails to appropriate funds for the following fiscal year.

It could also occur when the President refuses to sign legislation for the funding of federal government operations and agencies.

The executive arm of government led by President Donald Trump and the legislative arm have been at loggerheads for nearly two months over Trump’s attempt to build a wall along the Mexican border.

Building a wall was one of Trump’s major campaign promises as part of efforts to curb illegal migration and crime.He had boasted during his campaign that the Mexican government would pay for the wall.

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However, with the refusal of the Mexican government to fund the wall, the President approached the US legislative, asking the bi-cameral institution to provide $5bn which would be used in funding the wall.

The Congress, however, rejected Trump’s proposal. On December 11, Trump held a televised meeting with Speaker-designee, Nancy Pelosi, and Senate Minority Leader, Chuck Schumer, in which he asked them to support $5bn in funding for the border wall.

They refused and Trump said:“I am proud to shut down the government for border security … I will be the one to shut the government down. I’m not going to blame you for it … I will take the mantle. I will be the one to shut it down.”

Three days later, Politico reported that Trump was willing to sign a bill that delayed a government shutdown into 2019 and the new Congress.

On December 19, the Senate unanimously passed a continuing resolution, the Further Additional Continuing Appropriations Act, 2019, lasting until February 8, 2019.

Mick Mulvaney, incoming chief of staff of President Donald Trump, said the shutdown may continue till congress convenes on January 3.

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