Nigeria’s National Broadcasting Commission (NBC), the regulating agency for broadcasting, has ordered broadcasting stations in the country to stop using Twitter, following the government ban.
Armstrong Idachaba, NBC’s acting Director-General, in a statement on Monday, June 7, 2021, directed stations to uninstall and “desist from using Twitter as a source (UGC) of information gathering for news and programmes presentation especially phone-in.”
“Section 2(1) r of the NBC Act entrusts the Commission with responsibility to ensure strict adherence to the national laws, rules and regulations,” Idachaba said.
“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.”
The DG said the section 5.6.3 of the Code requires broadcasters 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).
“Note that 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,” Idachaba added.
Nigerian government had on Friday, June 4, 2021, suspended the operations of Twitter in the country.
The suspension came after Twitter took down a controversial tweet by President Muhammadu Buhari where he vowed to deal with suspected separatists attacking government institutions and security formations in “the language they understand,” citing his role as brigadier general in the 1967 civil war that claimed two million lives.
Defending the suspension, the government accused Twitter of playing double standards on issues concerning Nigeria’s unity.
Since the ban, Nigerians have been accessing Twitter through the use of a virtual private network (VPN).
On Saturday, June 5, 2021, Abubakar Malami, the Nigeria’s Attorney-General of Federation (AGF), ordered the prosecution of those violating the Twitter ban in Nigeria.
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