January 13, 2022

Nigerian Government Lifts Twitter Ban

The Nigerian government has finally lifted its controversial Twitter ban, one that has been enforced since June last year.

The social media platform was suspended after it deleted a controversial tweet made by President Muhammadu Buhari, in which he threatened to punish regional secessionists.

The ban drew backlash from citizens and human rights activists alike, saying that it hindered businesses nationwide and undermined freedom of expression.

In a statement released on Wednesday, 12 January, Kashifu Inuwa Abdullahi – the director general of the National Information Technology Development Agency – explained that the ban would be lifted at midnight after the platform promised to build a local office in Nigeria.

Twitter will work with the government and the tech industry “to develop a Code of Conduct in line with global best practices, applicable in almost all developed countries,” wrote Abdullahi.

The government also released a statement, whereby they acknowledged that “digital platforms and their operators wield enormous influence over the fabric of our society, social interaction and economic choices.”

They went on: “Therefore, our action is a deliberate attempt to recalibrate our relationship with Twitter to achieve the maximum mutual benefits for our nation without jeopardisng the justified interests of the Company [sic]. Our engagement has been very respectful, cordial, and successful.”

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