NBC directs TV, radio stations to de-install Twitter handles

THE National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) has directed all television and radio stations as well as other broadcasting services to de-install a US-based social media platform, Twitter.

This was contained in a statement signed by Director-General of NBC Armstrong Idichaba on Monday in Abuja.

The Nigerian government had, on Friday, suspended the operations of Twitter in Nigeria, an action that has been criticised by the European Union, United Kingdom and other international communities.

But Idichaba, in the statement, said the broadcasting services should also desist from using Twitter for information gathering.

“In Compliance to the above directive, Broadcasting Stations are hereby advised to de- install twitter handles and desist from using twitter as a source (UGC) of information gathering for News and programmes Presentation especially Phone-in,” the statement read in part.

NBC noted that the commission’s Act empowered it to ensure ‘strict adherence’ to Nigeria’s laws and regulations.

Although there is no Nigerian law that forbids the use of Twitter in Nigeria, NBC said it would be ‘unpatriotic’ for any broadcaster in Nigeria to continue to patronise the platform

The ICIR had reported that despite the suspension, Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari is yet to deactivate his account.

    Also, Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, Senate President Ahmed Lawan, House of Representatives Speaker Femi Gbajabiamila, and Deputy Senate President Ovie Omo-Agege all have active accounts on Twitter.

    Attorney General of the Federation Abubakar Malami, who said the government would prosecute anyone found using Twitter, still maintains an active account on the platform.

    The ICIR understands that despite the suspension and prosecution threat, many Nigerians, including some state governors, have continued to post from their Twitter accounts.

    Governors of Kaduna, Oyo and Ondo states have tweeted from their accounts after the suspension and threat of prosecution by the Federal Government.

    Nasir El Rufai using Twitter after suspension
    Nasir El Rufai using Twitter after suspension
    Seyi Makinde using Twitter after suspension
    Seyi Makinde using Twitter after suspension
    Rotimi Akeredolu using Twitter after suspension
    Rotimi Akeredolu using Twitter after suspension

    Lukman Abolade is an Investigative reporter with The ICIR. Reach out to him via [email protected], on twitter @AboladeLAA and FB @Correction94

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