The Transition Monitoring Group, (TMG) has condemned the suspension of operation of Twitter in Nigeria by President Muhammed Buhari led administration, which was contained in a statement, issued on Friday, 4 June, 2021 by the Minister of Information, Alhaji Lai Mohammed.
Penpushing reports that, the group said the suspension was infringement on Nigerians right to freely express their constitutional backed opinion through the popular global medium, stressing that, it is not only autocratic but totally wrong and negates the principle of constitutional democracy which guarantees inalienable rights of citizens.
‘It is instructive to say that this same government which rode to power through same medium couple of years back without restrictions even in the face of provocative tweets made by some of the characters that now constitute the present government preparatory to elections that ushered in this administration’ .
‘We also warn that any attempt to build Nigerian internet firewall that will give the government control over social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook, an internet filtering system that presently operates in China will be vehemently resisted as people will be mobilized’ .
‘It is important to know that closure of public space will only limit public discourses, democratic advancement and cause apprehension among other channels to be suspicious of the country’s intention democracy and rule of law which may cause antagonistic behaviour against Nigeria’.
Penpushing further reports that the group pointed out that, twitter is a global platform veritable for information sharing which has expanded business frontiers, free speech, open internet and largely helped to curb youth restiveness in the country.
‘It is disheartening to note that Nigeria’s economy has declined by over 2 billion naira in few days of Twitter ban, aggregating the shut down tools and estimating the economic impacts of internet disruption, app restrictions using world bank, Eurostat and US census as the case may be’.
‘While we absolutely condemn any act of citizen subjugation to exercise their fundamental rights, TMG would also not support incitement by any group hiding under any guise to aggravate tension or violence in the country’.
Penpushing also reports that, the body emphasised that banning twitter and targeting users for punishment is regressive, and advised the Nigerian Government to reconsider its position on the matter by rescind is stance in favour of rule of law.
The signatories of the statement include: Dr. Abiola Akiyode – Afolabi,( Chairperson, Transition Monitoring Group), Sina Adefolahan (Ogun State Coordinator),Christian Njoku(Lagos State Coordinator), Tolani Oyekanmi (Osun State Coordinator) and Akinsiku Mayokun( Oyo State Coordinator)
Penpushing reports that others are: Adaramola Emmanuel (Ondo State Coordinator),Ige Lawrence (Ekiti State Coordinator), Idris Lawanti (Gombe State),. George Monyei (Federal Capital Territory Coordinator), Lazarus Mom (Benue State Coordinator),. Aziz Bako (Nasarawa State Coordinator), Mohammed Wuyo (Borno State Coordinator) and Machil Maxwell Manidu (Adamawa State Coordinator)
The list also include: Gimba J.(Taraba State Coordinator),Mohammed Ngubdo Hassan( Kano State Coordinator), Kamaludeen Kabir( Kebbi State Coordinator),Nwagwugwu Rose (Imo State Coordinator), Mirian Menkiti (Enugu State Coordinator), Ibn Shaffi (Sokoto State Coordinator),. Bomo Mohammed Hassan(Yobe State Coordinator), KingsleyKefe (Edo State Coordinator) and Chris Kachi (Ebonyi State Coordinator)
Penpushing further reports that, others are: Mrs Udeh (Abia State Coordinator), Sylvester Okoduwa( River State Coordinator),Peace Edem (Akwa Ibom State Coordinator), Yemi Etengi – (Cross River Coordinator), Fatima Mohammad Umar (Jigawa State) and Ibrahim Amos (Bauchi State Coordinator)
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