Seyi Makinde, Oyo State Governor, has asked the Nigerian government to lift its ban on Twitter as the decision is likely to affect foreign investment, among other international relations as well as local businesses.
He made this statement on Saturday morning, less than 24 hours after Lai Mohammed, the Minister of Information and culture, announced the Federal Government’s decision.
“I believe the Federal Government should be actively interested in how certain policies and action will affect investor confidence,” Makinde partly said.
“I, therefore, use this medium to appeal to the Federal Government to reverse this suspension for the greater good of Nigerians.”
Makinde is the first governor to speak against the ban on Twitter’s operation in Nigeria.
From the perspective of democratic principles, the Oyo Governor pointed out that Nigerian leaders ought to “go beyond emotional reactions to issues and think about how our actions will affect the people we lead and our international ratings socially and economically”.
“Twitter has become the platform for young people and indeed all Nigerians to exercise their fundamental right to express and publish an opinion,” he said.
“They use the platform to complain, argue and give feedback to government and its agencies who in turn, use these to improve policies. This is a fundamental point that should be kept in mind as we debate the necessity of this suspension.”
As unemployment bites hard for Nigerians, young Nigerians have harnessed the wealth of social media, including Twitter, to advertise products.
Makinde finally reminded the federal government to consider the youth population using banned microblogging site for their sales.
“We should also remember that Twitter has gone beyond a source of communication for many of our hardworking youths in Nigeria,” he said.
“It has become a source of livelihood for many, irrespective of their political affiliations or religious leanings.
“Nigerian youths and digital communications organisations earn a living from being able to use the platform to post communications on behalf of their clients.
“Others who may not have physical stores also rely on Twitter to give visibility to their products and services.”
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