Ah!BUJA, NIGERIA—“anger” is a term used by those close to the president of Nigeria to describe how the leader felt on Friday. When his assistant informed him that Facebook had followed Twitter by deleting posts he had made on both platforms.
In a controversial post, President Muhammadu Buhari threatened to “deal with” the people of the southeast of the country. He has repeatedly accused him of being behind attacks on public infrastructure in the region.
“He is furious and wants to deal with both Twitter and Facebook,” an official in the president̵7;s office told The Daily Beast privately. [the social media companies] It’s an embarrassment to the president.”
without consulting too many people And overlooking his own vice president, Buhari ordered the Ministry of Information and Culture to “suspend” Twitter’s operations in the country indefinitely because “The continued use of platforms for activities that could undermine Nigeria’s corporate existence.” His closest advocate would not immediately target Facebook so as not to make it obvious that he was retaliating against the deleted post.
“Facebook’s actions ultimately resulted in the ban on Twitter,” another official told The Daily Beast. “Even if Facebook is not affected, things could change in the near future.”
The Twitter suspension, which was ordered two days after the company deleted Buhari’s tweet and minutes after Facebook took a similar action against his post. Addresses the president’s thoughts a lot. for him Social media has unleashed his personal ego. and he will teach them a lesson.
despite the damage His words may have stirred in a country of great religious and racial discrimination—Buhari. Muslims from the northwestern state of Katsina posted on social media on Tuesday that [referring to some people in the predominantly Christian southeast region] Today’s misbehavior is too young to be aware of the destruction and loss of life that occurred during the Nigerian Civil War. Those of us in the fields for 30 war months will treat them with a language they understand.”
The president’s posts on Twitter and Facebook refer to the brutal Nigeria-Biafra war. This left about 3 million people dead, mostly from the Igbo tribes in the east of the country in the late 1960s. As a soldier during the Civil War, Buhari commanded a battalion that played a key role in the first war: they. Capture Ogoja, Biafran’s major city at the time, and invade Enugu, the initial capital of the Republic of Biafra, a separatist state that existed until 1970.
After several Nigerians on Twitter flagged the president’s tweets to social media companies. The platform removed it Wednesday. It said it had violated our policy on inappropriate behavior.
But even if Twitter doesn’t do so. Similar to the measures the company has taken against Donald Trump in tweeting disinformation about the 2020 US presidential election, conspiracy theories published by officials in the Nigerian leader’s cabinet are enough to defame. the stage in the eyes of the president
“Using Twitter is not a known crime or a written offence. ”
— Mike Ozekhome, Nigerian human rights lawyer
For example, Information Minister Lai Mohammed has accused Twitter of “double standards” and questioned the motivations of the social media giant in the country. He said in a press release that “Twitter’s mission in Nigeria is highly questionable” whether he meant what he said or not. He seemed to give Buhari something to think about. After all, the president had a habit of listening to the smallest opinions of the cabinet members. especially the opinions consistent with his own opinions.
For example, when 17 governors from southern Nigeria voted a few weeks ago to ban open grazing aimed at ending the region’s ongoing land disputes. The country’s Attorney General Abubakar Malami wrongly claimed that the governor’s decision in accordance with the provisions of the Constitution” because it violates the constitutional rights of His shocking position was recognized by Buhari, who accused the governor of “politics” with serious security concerns in an attempt to “define freedom of movement”. will
Buhari seems to have always welcomed the ironic position of some members of his cabinet who have called to question his ability to separate wheat from chaff. He has approved Malami’s proposal to prosecute perpetrators over the government’s ban on Twitter in the country, as it is clear that many Nigerians download VPN apps to gain access to the platform.
The attorney general, in a statement released by his office, said he had “directed” the Federal Director of Public Prosecution (DPPF) “to take action and begin vigorously prosecuting federal violators. Enabling Twitter in Nigeria,” a leading lawyer in the country said, was unconstitutional.
“Using Twitter is not a known crime or a written offence,” Nigerian human rights lawyer Mike Ozekhome said in a statement on Sunday. [National Assembly] Not enacting a law prohibiting the use of social media, including Twitter, mere announcements, orders or verbal threats is not equivalent to the law NASS has properly passed.”
The president’s actions also show that He hasn’t changed much from the man who ruled Nigeria with an iron fist as a military dictator from 1983 to 1985, during which he executed a drug dealer. jailed journalist and imprisoned politicians One of the actions he took at the time—which showed he was able to fully target those who were on the radar—was the shocking arrest of Umaru Dikko, who served as Transport Minister under former President Shehu Shagari. which was removed from office Shortened by a coup led by Buhari on New Year’s Eve in 1983.
After exile in London following a coup d’état by the new military regime, Dikko was seized outside his London home in July 1984 by a Nigerian spy, assisted by an Israeli doctor and a diamond dealer. Dikko was taken into a car. The container was taken to Stansted Airport in Essex, where a Boeing 707 freighter from Nigeria awaits his return to his home country. He was handcuffed, drugged and chained to a crate by his captors. which had the doctor by his side to make sure his breathing stayed in the tube.
It was a call to the police by Dikko’s secretary, who saw her boss being dragged into the van as she glanced out the window. This ultimately resulted in customs officials opening the crates in front of an official representative of the Nigerian government and finding the former minister, who had been taken to hospital for treatment. Arrest the captor
Nearly 37 years later, Buhari’s Twitter ban, a platform used by 40 million Nigerians, including paid influencers and advertisers. shows that even now The Nigerian leader will do anything to satisfy his ego. Even if it means limiting access to platforms that many people rely on financially. But in a country with a 33 percent unemployment rate, which is the second highest in the world.
What will happen to Twitter users in Nigeria who resist the ban remains to be seen. But few fear governments barking—not even the social media companies in question. which stands in solidarity with Nigerian users
“Free access and #OpenInternet It is an important human right in modern society,” Twitter said in a statement. “We will work to restore access for everyone in Nigeria who uses Twitter to communicate and connect with the world.”