The Ministry of Information disclosed that President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the composition of the Federal Government’s team to engage with Twitter over the recent suspension of the operation of the microblogging and social networking service in Nigeria.
According to a statement released on Tuesday by the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, the Federal Government’s team which will be chaired by the Minister of Information 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.
The Federal Government had earlier in June suspended, indefinitely, the operations of the microblogging and social networking service site in Nigeria, citing the persistent use of the Twitter platform for activities that were capable of undermining Nigeria’s corporate existence.
Twitter ban was announced by the Minister of Information two days after Twitter deleted President Buhari’s tweet wherein he threatened to deal with secessionist agitators “in the language they understand”.
The social media networking site had said the tweet violated the Twitter Rules.
The ban has attracted widespread condemnations as Nigerians described it as violation of rights of citizens and a prelude to dictatorship.
More than 39 million Nigerians have a Twitter account, according to NOI polls, a public opinion and research organization based in Nigeria.
Nigerian telecoms operators complied with the government directive on the ban but Nigerians are circumventing ban using VPN.
The statement from the Minister of Information noted that Twitter wrote to President Buhari seeking to engage with the Federal Government over the suspension, with a view to charting a path forward.