The United States (US), the United Kingdom (UK), the European Union (EU), the Canada, Republic of Ireland and Norway have expressed disappointment over the decision of Nigerian government to ban Twitter operations in the country.
Recall that the President Muhammadu Buhari led government, through the Ministry of Information, had on Friday, slammed an indefinite suspension on Twitter after the platform yanked off a tweet by the president making reference to the civil war.
Amid the outrage, however, the presidency on Saturday said the ban was temporary.
But in a joint statement issued in Abuja, the diplomatic missions of Canada, the Delegation of European Union to Nigeria, the Republic of Ireland, the United Kingdom and the United States of America, conveyed their disappointment over the Government of Nigeria’s announcement suspending Twitter and proposing registration requirements for other social media.
“We strongly support the fundamental human right of free expression and access to information as a pillar of democracy in Nigeria as around the world and these rights apply online as well as offline,” the statement read.
“Banning systems of expression is not the answer. These measures inhibit access to information and commerce at precisely the moment when Nigeria needs to foster inclusive dialogue and expression of opinions, as well as share vital information in this time of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The statement emphasized that the path to a more secured Nigeria lied in more, not less, communication to accompany the concerted efforts of Nigeria’s citizens in fulsome dialogue toward unity, peace and prosperity.
“As Nigeria’s partners, we stand ready to assist in achieving these goals,” they said.