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Buhari orders Twitter ban lifted, but Nigerians must use it for business, positive things

Buhari says the ban should be lifted if conditions are met.

President Muhammadu Buhari [Bernard Menigault/Alamy]

President Muhammadu Buhari has ordered that a ban on the services of social media app, Twitter, be lifted in Nigeria if conditions are met.

The 78-year-old said in his Independence Day speech on Friday, October 1, 2021 the platform must ensure Nigerians use it for business and positive engagements.

The president said some people have been using it as a platform to coordinate criminal activities, spread fake news, and promote ethnic and religious sentiments.

The Federal Government had controversially banned Twitter in June, accusing it of endorsing activities that are destabilising Nigeria.

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The suspension was announced just days after Twitter deleted a tweet from President Buhari's official account after it was deemed to have violated its rules.

The tweet had been widely reported by Nigerians as harmful after the president appeared to threaten separatist agitators in the south east region with a repeat of the civil war that killed millions between 1967 and 1970.

Many critics, including foreign governments, strongly opposed the suspension as a violation of the rights of Nigerians.

Buhari said on Friday that the government's dialogue with Twitter revolved around national security, physical representation, fair taxation, dispute resolution, and local content.

It's unclear when the order to lift the ban will be enforced.

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