Nigeria’s president, Muhammadu Buhari has ordered the conditionally lifting of the government’s ban on microblogging platform, Twitter.
Njenje Media News reports that the President in his Independence day broadcast described social media as a very useful platform but regretted that the platform has been misused to organize, coordinate, and execute criminal activities, propagate fake news, and promote ethnic and religious sentiments.
In his words:
“Social media is a very useful platform that has enabled millions of Nigerians to connect with loved ones, promote their businesses, socialize, and access news and other information.
“However, recent events have shown that the platform is not just an innocuous platform for information dissemination.
“Rather some users have misused the platform to organize, coordinate, and execute criminal activities, propagate fake news, and promote ethnic and religious sentiments.
“To address these negative trends, the Federal Government of Nigeria suspended the operations of Twitter in Nigeria on June 5, 2021, to allow the Government to put measures in place to address these challenges.
“Following the suspension of Twitter operations, Twitter Inc. reached out to the Federal Government of Nigeria to resolve the impasse. Subsequently, I constituted a Presidential Committee to engage Twitter to explore the possibility of resolving the issue.
“The Committee, along with its Technical Team, has engaged with Twitter and has addressed a number of key issues. These are National Security and Cohesion; Registration, Physical presence and Representation; Fair Taxation; Dispute Resolution; and Local Content.
“Following the extensive engagements, the issues are being addressed and I have directed that the suspension be lifted but only if the conditions are met to allow our citizens to continue the use of the platform for business and positive engagements.
“As a country, we are committed to ensuring that digital companies use their platform to enhance the lives of our citizens, respect Nigeria’s sovereignty, cultural values and promote online safety.”
Njenje Media News recalls that the Nigerian Government through the Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed had June 5, 201 announced the suspension of the activities of Twitter in the country, citing its alleged use to undermine the corporate existence of the country. The news was greeted with widespread criticism from the majority of the populace.