Nigeria’s government has suspended indefinitely the operations of the microblogging and social networking service, Twitter in the country.
The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, announced the suspension in a statement through the Special Assistant to the President (Media), Office of the Minister of Information and Culture, Abuja, Segun Adeyemi.
Mohammed, who cited the persistent use of the platform for activities that are capable of undermining Nigeria’s corporate existence, said the federal government also directed the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) to immediately commence the process of licensing all OTT and social media operations in Nigeria.
Recall that Twitter had earlier deleted a tweet by President Muhammadu Buhari in which he threatened to punish pro-Biafra groups blamed for escalating attacks on government and security authorities.The social media platform said Buhari’s tweet violated its “abusive behaviour” policy, leading to a 12-hour suspension of his account.
The tweet promised a response to waves of attacks blamed on the Eastern Security Network (ESN), an armed group which emerged from the main pro-Biafran secessionist movement, the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB).
Similarly, Twitter also pulled down a threat video where President Buhari warned youths of fueling insecurity.
The video which was initially posted on the official handle of the Government of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, @NGRPresident, was deemed genocidal.
In the video, while the president was addressing the attacks on the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) facilities in the region, he stated the role he played alongside other Nigerian military officers in the Nigerian Civil War of 1966-70, which led to the murder of over three million Igbos.