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Twitter ban difficult to enforce in Nigeria, says ICT experts

By Our Reporter

Newwavereporters have gathered that since the ban on Twitter by the Nigerian government, many have been questioning the validity and effect of the sanction.

Some pundits are disappointed as they asked if Nigeria has what it takes to enforce Federal Government’s ‘indefinite suspension’ of Twitter.

Some Information and Communications Technology (ICT) experts believe it does not.

A cross section of the experts contacted on Saturday, June 5, 2021, said Nigeria lacks a central information dissemination system that is required to make a ban work.

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President, Association of Telecommunicatio Companies of Nigeria (ATCON), Ikechukwu Nnamani, said he received the news with shock and was trying to study the situation to determine what level of intervention is required.

Nnamani who is also the Founder/CEO, Medallion Communications Limited, an interconnect clearing house and co-location data service company, however, hinted that the Association is already in talks with relevant government agencies to see how the issue can be resolved without any backlash.

But the immediate past President of ATCON, Olusola Teniola, said, “From the look of things, it is very clear that the government is trying to regulate the internet and social media.

“Unlike China, which is a communist country and has a central information system, this is not possible in Nigeria.

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“As we speak, Twitter is still being accessed. It is not inoperative as we speak. So I think it is a mere wishful thinking on the part of government.”

Pressed further, Teniola said, “In the case of Nigeria, it is very difficult to enforce because Twitter doesn’t have a physical office or presence in Nigeria.

“Their office is in Ghana. What obtains is that it is the local technology companies that provide access to their services which people access here.

“Even though the government is desirous of banning the activities of Twitter, it is powerless in this instance because there are several ways to access Twitter.

“I think the government decision would be weakened by the fact there are several other ways to bypass the ban and easily access their (Twitter) service. So there is really no cause for alarm.

“The digital world cannot be controlled because it is a global platform.”

Also reacting to the Twitter suspension, Mr. Akeem Baiyewu, a digital media expert, described it as an exercise in futility.

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