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Twitter assures of commitment to civic participation

Microblogging giant, Twitter, has assured the Federal Government and Nigerians of its commitment to driving civic participation.

Following the government’s announcement, Twitter Public Policy, yesterday, said it was “pleased” that the service “has been restored for everyone in Nigeria.”

Twitter posted: “We are pleased that Twitter has been restored for everyone in Nigeria. Our mission in Nigeria and around the world is to serve the public conversation.

“We are deeply committed to Nigeria, where Twitter is used by people for commerce, cultural engagement, and civic participation.

“We’re committed to integrating diverse perspectives that make our service better for everyone.”

The Federal Government late on Wednesday, said it would lift its ban on the operations of the social media giant in the country after Twitter agreed to conditions, including opening a local office.

The Chairman Technical Committee, Nigeria-Twitter Engagement, and Director-General, National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), Kashifu Inuwa Abdullahi, announced the lifting of the suspension in a statement.

The statement listed the conditions to also include addressing operations and tax issues and “managing prohibited publications in line with Nigerian law.”

We are deeply committed to Nigeria, where Twitter is used by people for commerce, cultural engagement, and civic participation. We’re committed to integrating diverse perspectives that make our service better for everyone.

Recall that in June 2021, the Federal Government had announced the indefinite suspension of Twitter in Nigeria, accusing the United States-based company of allowing its platform to be used “for activities that are capable of undermining Nigeria’s corporate existence.”

The suspension came two days after Twitter temporarily suspended President Muhammadu Buhari’s account for violating Twitter’s abusive behaviour policy after a tweet in which he threatened to punish regional secessionists in the wake of attacks on public property.

Angry and shocked, many Twitter users at the time cited a wave of popular protests against police brutality, which saw young people mobilising through social media under the #EndSARS hashtag, as one of the reasons behind the move.

The suspension prompted many to turn to Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) to be able to access the online platform. Despite the massive usage of VPNs, however, experts said the ban sent the wrong signal to foreign investors and hurt small businesses using Twitter as a source of livelihood.

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