The European Union, Canada, United Kingdom(UK), Republic of Ireland are amongst the latest countries to condemn President Muhammadu Buhari administration’s ban on social media platform, twitter, calling the action a “disappointment”.
In a joint statement, the mission of the countries in Nigeria express support for Nigerians freedom of expression as a pillar of democracy. They promised to stand by the country in its quest to uphold the fundamental human rights.
Below is the statement:
The diplomatic missions of Canada, European Union(delegation to Nigeria), the Republic of Ireland, the United Kingdom, and the United States of America convey our disappointment over the Government of Nigeria’s announcement suspending #Twitter and proposing registration requirements for other social media.
We strongly support the fundamental human right of free expression and access to information as a pillar of democracy in Nigeria as around the world and these rights apply online as well as offline. Banning systems of expression is not the answer. These measures inhibit access to information and commerce at precisely the moment when Nigeria needs to foster inclusive dialogue and expression of opinions, as well as share vital information in this time of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The path to a more secure Nigeria lies in more, not less communication to accompany the concerted efforts of Nigeria’s citizens in fulsome dialogue toward unity, peace, and prosperity.
As Nigeria’s partners, we stand ready to assist in achieving these goals.