Social media giant Twitter has reacted to the decision by the Federal Government to lift the ban on the use of its platform in Nigeria.
“We recently met with the Nigerian government to discuss why Twitter has been blocked and ways to resolve the matter,” a spokesperson for the microblogging site was quoted as saying by Reuters.
“Our aim is to chart a path forward to the restoration of Twitter for everyone in Nigeria. We look forward to ongoing discussions with the Nigerian government and seeing the service restored very soon.”
This followed the announcement by the Minister of information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, that the government would lift the ban on Twitter in a matter of days.
Mohammed who briefed State House correspondents at the end of the Federal Executive Council meeting on Wednesday revealed that the status of the conversation with the social media giant had gotten to an amicable stage.
He explained that agreements had been reached in all areas, except three that have been unresolved.
One of the pending issues centres on the condition that Twitter establishes a legal presence registered as a Nigerian company with an office address and an employee to serve as a country representative in Nigeria.
Although Twitter did not turn down the condition in totality, it insists that the earliest time it can establish a company will be by 2022.
Twitter Operations Suspended
Before the ban on the microblogging site, millions of Nigerians, including public office holders and institutions make use of the platform for various purposes.
Just like every other user expressing a view or sharing information, President Muhammadu Buhari posted a tweet on June 1.
The President who received security reports from the leadership of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on the series of attacks on its facilities had threatened to treat Nigerians “misbehaving” in “the language they understand”.
“Many of those misbehaving today are too young to be aware of the destruction and loss of lives that occurred during the Nigeria Civil War.
“Those of us in the fields for 30 months, who went through the war, will treat them in the language they understand,” the Nigerian leader had said in his tweets.
Barely a day after President Buhari tweeted, Twitter took down the post which it said violated its rules.
Two days after the microblogging site took down the President’s tweet, the government announced that it had indefinitely suspended Twitter’s operations in the country.
The persistent use of the platform for activities capable of undermining Nigeria’s corporate existence was one of the reasons cited.
But the government said it had nothing to do with the deleted tweet.
It had also directed the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) to immediately commence the process of licensing all OTT and social media operations in Nigeria.
This sparked a widespread outcry from individuals and groups within the country, as well as members of the international community who asked the government to rescind its decision.