From Gyang Bere, Jos
The Deputy Chairman, House of Representatives Committee on Anti-Corruption, and member representing Jos South/Jos East Federal Constituency, Hon Dachung Musa Bagos, has urged President Muhammadu Buhari to urgently rescind the ban placed on Twitter to save the country’s democracy and grow the economy.
He suggested that apart from adversely impacting Nigeria’s democratic advancement and ailing economy, the ban will worsen an already bad security situation in the country.
Bagos, in a press statement issued on Tuesday in Abuja, said: ‘I wish to on behalf of my constituents, other patriotic Nigerians and horde of Nigerian youths who make a living out of Twitter and other social media platforms call on President Muhammadu Buhari to as a matter of urgency lift the ban on Twitter.
‘This ban has immediate and long term negative effect on the economic and political effects on the nation and should be reversed in the interest of the generality of Nigerians and our international friends and partners.’
The legislator said the ban is already affecting the income of many Nigerian youths who rely on Twitter for their daily income by attracting investments for technological start-up businesses.
‘In this age when Nigeria is battling with widespread unemployment and unprecedented security challenges, it will be wrong to throw more hardworking youths into the unemployment market and make them susceptible for recruitment by terrorist groups.’
Bagos noted that the ban is an indirect way of regulating social media, thereby infringing on the rights of Nigerians to freely express themselves and engage in an exchange of ideas as well as access information.
‘I appeal to Mr President not to throw the baby with the bathwater but look for other avenues to resolve the government’s differences with Twitter instead of placing an indefinite ban.
‘The federal government must know that the ban on Twitter is affecting Nigerians from participating in the process of governance and limiting their rights to promote transparency and accountability in the system.’
The lawmaker urged the government to save Nigeria from once again descending into the abyss of a pariah nation since the Twitter ban is counterproductive to diplomatic and international engagements.
‘A situation whereby diplomats in the biggest black nation on earth cannot access Twitter inflicts a dictatorial scar on the modest progress Nigeria has so far made politically and democratically.’