The United States Government of President Joe Biden has responded to President Muhammadu Buhari’s ban on Twitter operations in Nigeria, describing it as “a poor message to its citizens, investors and businesses”.
The reaction was contained in a brief message circulated on Saturday evening via the official account of the US Mission in Nigeria, @USinNigeria.
“Nigeria’s constitution provides for freedom of expression. The Government’s recent #Twitterban undermines Nigerians ability to exercise this fundamental freedom and sends a poor message to its citizens, investors and businesses,” read the statement.
“Banning social media and curbing every citizen’s ability to seek, receive, and impart information undermines fundamental freedoms.
“As President Biden has stated, our need for individual expression, open public conversation, and accountability has never been greater. The path to a more secure Nigeria lies in more, not less communication, alongside concerted efforts toward unity, peace, and prosperity.”
Lai Mohammed, Nigeria’s Minister of Information and Culture, announced the ban on Friday in protest of Twitter’s decision to remove an offensive tweet threatening Nigerian citizens with the Civil War treatment.
Afterwards, on Saturday, Abubakar Malami, Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, ordered the immediate prosecution of offenders of the Federal Government’s ban on Twitter operations.
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