Given that freedom of expression is still guaranteed under the 1999 Constitution of FRN as amended, any attempt to take away such rights from the citizens will amount to the infringement of the citizens fundamental human rights.
Although, freedom of expression is still not absolute in itself, for there are several extant laws that still regulates the limit to our expression rights.
Of course, the powers to regulates our conduct as Citizens has been handed to our representative Governments. Therefore the Government derived their powers from the people.
The Government must seen to make decisions in the interest of the people.
Social Media, no doubt has handed over powers to the people to own individual media channels. Thus, Information to the public becomes largely unregulated unlike the mainstream media.
Social Media offers to us both merits and demerits. There arises execess in form of fake news, hate speeches and unrestrained freedom except by the owners of this platform.
Government intervention, control and monopoly over Information dissemination seemed to be non existent.
This present Government benefited immensely from all existing social media channels to send GEJ back to otuoke unprecedentedly.
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Social media platforms were used to repackage the old man from daura as born again democrat.
In the cause of the outgoing week, PMB made genocide related Content on Twitter and the latter yanked it off subsequently, because the content violated their platform rule, the sanction is lesser compared to what they did for former American Number One citizen.
Baba Lai, has been critical of social media platforms since they rode to power through it. He never hide his hatred for the new media, so it was not a surprise to me when read the suspension verdict to Twitter and the need for other social media platforms to seek clearance from the Nigeria Government.
To my mind, while regulations of social media is inevitable either now or later in the future, but by making this verdict in response to the verdict given by Twitter to Mr President genocide content amount to pedestrian reaction.
The verdict or the purported regulations was made in bad faith. It is draconian.
On moral ground, this government erred greatly, the same Twitter and other social media you used as your aid to get to the throne , the same you are now treating as enemies.
The Nigeria People have the final say, as to what their law or regulations should be , and all the extant laws affords them the right to seek redress within the ambit of law, where Government of the day becomes dictatorial.
More than 200 million voices can not be shut physically, even if Government shut down all the social media channels, the people voice’s can not be shut down . Afterall, during the military era, where there were no social media platforms, the people voices through the mainstream could not be permanently shut down.
Though, Twitter Nigeria as of this night is still running and functional.
It is my hope that this Government should be circumspect in their actions. The key stakeholders in this Government can not be there forever.
Nigeria Shall be Great Again.
Saturday’s Public Discourse with Tunji Ajibola