The Federal Government has directed all broadcast stations in the country to go off Twitter.
Armstong Idachaba, Director-General of the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC), gave the directive in a memo to broadcast stations.
He directed all television and radio stations in the country to de-install Twitter and desist from using it as a source of news.
“Consequent on the suspension of Twitter operations in Nigeria by the Federal Government over the persistent use of the platform for activities that are capable of undermining the corporate existence of Nigeria, the National Broadcasting Commission directs all Broadcasting Stations in Nigeria to suspend the patronage of Twitter immediately.”
He quoted section 2(1) r of the NBC Act, which entrusts the commission with responsibility to ensure strict adherence to the national laws, rules and regulations to back up his directive.
“Also, section 3.11.2 of the Nigeria Broadcasting Code provides that “the broadcaster shall ensure that law enforcement is upheld at all times in a matter depicting that law and order are socially superior to or more desirable than Crime and Anarchy”, he added.
He equally drew the broadcasters’ attention to section 5.6.3 of the code which requires them to be mindful of materials that may cause disaffection, incite to panic or rift in the society in the use of a user generated Content (UGC).
He said it will be unpatriotic for any broadcaster in Nigeria to continue to patronise the suspended Twitter as a source of its information “therefore strict compliance is enjoined.”
Nigerians have been circumventing the ban through the use of Virtual Private Networks (VPN) but on Saturday, Abubakar Malami, Minister of Justice, threatened that those still making use of Twitter will be prosecuted.
The international community has rejected the action of the government, describing it as clamping down on the rights of Nigerian to freedom of expression.