…After accusing Twitter of backing terrorism in Nigeria
President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the composition of the Federal government’s team to engage with Twitter over the recent suspension of the operations of the social media platform in Nigeria.
The team, which would be chaired by the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, also comprises the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Minister of Works and Housing, Minister of State for Labour and Employment as well as other relevant government agencies.
Minister Mohammed said following the indefinite suspension of its operations in Nigeria allegedly for activities that are capable of undermining the country’s corporate existence, Twitter wrote to President Buhari seeking to engage with the Federal government over the suspension, with a view to charting a path forward.
Lai Mohammed had earlier told the House of Representatives that the government decided to ban the operations of twitter in Nigeria because it was promoting instability and act of terrorism in the country.
The minister, who spoke at a public hearing on the Twitter ban organised by a joint Committee of the House on Tuesday, said despite repeated reminders, twitter continued to provide separatist groups the platform to promote terrorism in the country.
He said the decision by the government was supported by the position of section 45 of the 1999 constitution, the Company and Allied Matters Act and also the anti-terrorism act among others.
He also accused twitter of providing IPOB – an organization that was banned by the court in Nigeria – the platform to spread hate news and ordering the killing of soldiers, policemen and burning public institutions.
On the issue of personal liberty, Mohammed explained that personal liberty can always be suspended when the rights of others are at stake.