twitter ban nigeria

Nigeria joins North Korea, China in banning Twitter

Andile Sicetsha - 05.06.2021

Nigeria joins a list of authoritarian regimes that have an indefinite ban placed on Twitter.

The people of Nigeria have taken over the global trending topic on Twitter following their government’s announcement of a ban on the social media platform.

Nigeria bans Twitter: ‘It undermines our corporate existence’

However, the West African country is not alone in this defensive stance towards the social network. Three other countries have Twitter placed on an indefinite ban list and while each country’s reason is unique, it all departs from the notion that Twitter may have become too influential to society.

Nigeria, two days after President Muhammadu Buhari’s “civil war” tweet was taken down, confirmed that Twitter was suspended indefinitely due to the “persistent use of the platform for activities that are capable of undermining Nigeria’s corporate existence.”

Nigeria’s Information Minister Lai Mohammed criticised Twitter’s ‘overreaching’ action of deleting the president’s tweet which, in his view, was within his basic rights of expression to state his disdain for rioters who destroy state infrastructure.

In its response to the bold decision taken by Nigeria, Twitter only indicated that they were concerned about Buhari’s call and that updates would be provided “when we know more.”

Three other countries with a permanent ban on Twitter

Nigeria is the latest country to place harsh restrictions against the use of Twitter. There are three other countries who’ve placed Twitter on the ban list and they are:

China

Twitter is inaccessible in China via the browser and this has been the case since 2009. The deadly riots of Xinjiano are often said to be the reason behind China’s permanent Twitter block. However, Chinese people are still able to access the social media platform, thanks to VPNs.

Iran

Twitter has been banned in Iran, since 2009. The ban was prompted by the year’s contentious elections. Interestingly, President Hassan Rouhani has a verified Twitter account with more than 300 000 followers.

North Korea

To protect its people from ‘poisonous’ Western ideology, North Korea has not only banned Twitter, but generally, a majority of the country’s citizens have barely ever gained access to the internet.