From Ndubuisi Orji, Abuja
The House of Representatives has rejected a motion requesting the federal government to lift the suspension on Twitter, as a result of its negative economic impact on Nigerians.
The lawmakers took the decision at the Committee of the Whole when they considered the report of its joint Committee that investigated the suspension of the micro-blogging site.
The House had mandated its Committees on Information, National Orientation, Ethics and Values, Telecommunications, Information and Technology, Justice, and National Security and Intelligence to investigate the suspension of Twitter by the government.
The deputy minority leader, during consideration of the report, had proposed that the Federal Government should take cognizance of the negative effect of the Twitter suspension on Nigerians who earn their living from the platform and lift the suspension.
However, when the deputy speaker, Idris Wase, who chaired the committee, put the question, majority of members voted against the proposal.
Nevertheless, the House urged the Federal Government should be pro-active in their interface with Twitter so as to come up with timely resolution of the impasse.
Earlier, the speaker, Femi Gbajabiamila, and Wase disagreed on the committee report.
While Wase said the the committee was not thorough in its assignment, the speaker said it would be “uncharitable” and “disingenuous” for anyone to lampoon the committee.
The Deputy Speaker said: “I am convinced beyond reasonable doubt that truly, they need to have exhausted more avenues. I noted one point. It borders on security. And for the fact that it borders on security, that the content said invite the Minister, it does not preclude them from inviting the National Security Adviser. Hearing from the minister (of information), who may just have a tip of information cannot be the basis of writing recommendation that Nigerian government has taken based on security.”