BREAKING: Twitter capitulates, begs FG for truce *Abuja talks tough, sets out new rules

By Editor on 09/06/2021

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The Federal Government may have won the first stage of the war with micro-blogging and social network giant, Twitter as the US-based firm is said to be begging for dialogue to end the week-old imbroglio, which has led to the suspension of its operations in Nigeria.

Lai Muhammed, spokesman of the Federal Government, told State House correspondents after the weekly Federal Executive Council (FEC), Mohammed said Twitter had reached out to the government seeking high-level discussion to resolve the issue.

Mohammed, Minister of Information and Culture, who said that he got the message on Wednesday morning, insisted however, that henceforth, the government would set some rules within which the organisation and other social media platforms would operate in the country.

He said: “What we’re saying is that all platforms, before you operate in Nigeria, you must register in Nigeria. Whether it is Netflix, whether it is Iroko, whether it’s Facebook, they’re doing business in Nigeria and making money and they’re not paying taxes.

“That’s the reason. In addition to being able to regulate them, they’re making billions of naira out of this country and they’re not paying tax. That can’t be allowed to go on. Yes, it is true. They’ve reached out. Only this morning, I got communication that they’re now ready to hold senior-level discussion with us. I’ve just confirmed from my colleague that he’s got the information.

“Our conditions are already laid out. One, to do business in Nigeria, they must register. Two, they must be licensed. Three, they must have to refrain from activities that are inimical to the growth of Nigeria.”

The Minister, also confirmed that former US President, whose Twitter handle was yanked off for allegedly supporting the activities of violent protesters who stormed the capitol on February 6, 2021, which was interpreted as “insurrection” by a groundswell of Americans, particularly anti-Trump supporters, for which he was impeached for the second time by the House of Representatives, had congratulated Nigeria for hitting hard on the organization.

“By the way, Donald Trump has congratulated Nigeria, if that means anything, that, that’s what he ought to have done. But that’s just by the way,” he said, adding that what happened in Lagos, during last year’s #EndSARS protest in addition to allowing the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu, the unrestricted use of the platform to call for the killing of policemen, indicated how the organisation had harmed the country.

“What happened in Lagos, where 37 policemen, and six soldiers, was not insurrection? Two, we kept asking Twitter to delete the tweets of Nnamdi Kanu. Under what legal framework would it be right for a man to stay outside the country and direct its members in Nigeria to kill policemen, they should kill soldiers, they should burn down correction centres? So, I think it is a no-brainer that Twitter definitely does not mean well for this country. I didn’t hide it.”




Posted on June, 9 2021

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