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Nigerians woke up on Thursday and noticed that they were able to access Twitter without using a Virtual Private Network (VPN) after the Federal Government lifted its suspension on the microblogging network on Wednesday evening.
Africa Daily News, New York recalls that the Federal Government had in June last year suspended Twitter in Nigeria after accusing the platform of enabling the spread of fake news and hate speech that undermined national security.
The Twitter hammer came into effect days after the platform deleted a tweet from President Muhammadu Buhari referencing the Nigerian civil war.
The suspension was criticised by many including opposition party PDP, rights activists, and the international community.
Nobel laureate Wole Soyinka described the suspension of the access as a ‘petulant gesture, unbecoming of a democratically elected president.’
This announcement was contained in a statement issued by the Chairman Technical Committee Nigeria-Twitter Engagement and Director-General National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), Kashifu Inuwa Abdullahi which was obtained by Africa Today News, New York.
‘The Federal Government of Nigeria (FGN) directs me to inform the public that President Muhammadu Buhari, GCFR, has approved the lifting of the suspension of Twitter operation in Nigeria effective from 12am tonight, 13th January 2022. The approval was given following a memo written to the President by the Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Prof Isa Ali Ibrahim,‘ the statement added.
‘In the Memo, the Minister updates and requests the President’s approval for the lifting based on the Technical Committee Nigeria-Twitter Engagement’s recommendation.’
Africa Daily News, New York reports that the government and Twitter have been in negotiations since over restoring the service based on a set of conditions, including Twitter registering operations in Nigeria.
AFRICA DAILY NEWS, NEW YORK