Senior lawyers, human rights groups and the Igbo socio-cultural organisation, the Ohanaeze Ndigbo, have hailed a social media giant, Twitter, for deleting a controversial post by the President Muhammadu Buhari on Nigerian Civil War from 1967 and 1970.
The tweet, which was posted on Tuesday, read in part, “Many of those misbehaving today are too young to be aware of the destruction and loss of lives that occurred during the Nigerian 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 tweet attracted strong criticisms with many Nigerians saying it was a threat to commit human rights violations.
Following several complaints, Twitter bowed to pressure, deleting the tweet.
A comment by Twitter stated, “This Tweet violated the Twitter rules.”
The social media giant had earlier in the year banned then United States President, Donald Trump, for his inciting comments which led to the attack on the US Congress.
The Federal Government in its reaction said Twitter’s mission in Nigeria was suspicious.
The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Muhammed, who said this while addressing State House correspondents at the Presidential Villa, Abuja on Wednesday. He labelled Twitter as complicit in the polarisation of Nigerians.
He said, “Twitter may have its own rule but it’s not the universal rule.
“If Mr President feels very bad and concerned about a situation, he is free to express such views.
“Now, we should stop comparing apples with oranges. If an organisation is proscribed, it is different from any other which is not proscribed.
“Two, when an organisation gives directives to its members, to attack police stations, to kill policemen, to attack correctional centres, to kill warders, and you are now saying that Mr President does not have the right to express his dismay and anger about that, then you are the one guilty of double standards.”
Referring to the Indigenous People of Biafra and its leader, Nnamdi Kanu, Mohammed said there was no reason to justify a leader who “stays somewhere outside Nigeria, and directs his members to attack the symbols of authority, the police, the military, especially when that organisation has been proscribed.”
He added that no one could justify giving orders to kill policemen or “anybody you do not agree with.”
The minister turned his attention to the social networking service, Twitter, which he accused of having a suspicious mission in Nigeria.
He said, “The mission of Twitter in Nigeria is very suspicious. Has Twitter deleted the violent tweets that Nnamdi Kanu has been sending? Has it?
“And you see, when people were burning police stations and killing policemen in Nigeria during #EndSARS, for Twitter, it was about the right to protest. But when a similar thing happened on the Capitol, it became an insurrection.
“You see, we are not going to be fooled by anybody. We have a country to rule and we will do so to the best of our ability. Twitter mission in Nigeria citing those two examples is very suspect. What is their agenda?
“How does Mr President’s speech that anybody who is destroying infrastructure, police offices and INEC offices should be ready for the consequences, inciting violence?