The National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) has asked all broadcast stations in Nigeria to ‘de-install’ their Twitter handles.
The order which came via a press release on Sunday June 6, 2021 and signed by the Acting Director-General of the commission, Professor Armstrong Idachaba, is coming on the heels of the suspension of the operations of Twitter in Nigeria by the Federal Government.
The press release which was titled ‘Suspend Twitter Handles’ reads thus: “Consequent on the suspension of Twitter operations in Nigeria by the Federal Government over the persistent use of the platform for activities that are capable of undermining the corporate existence of Nigeria, the National Broadcasting Commission directs all Broadcasting Stations in Nigeria to suspend the patronage of Twitter immediately.
“In compliance to the above directive, Broadcasting Stations are hereby advised to de-install twitter handles and desist from using twitter as a source (UGC) of information gathering for news and programmes presentation especially Phone-in.
“Section 2(1) r of the NBC Act entrusts the Commission with responsibility to ensure strict adherence to the national laws, rules and regulations. Also, Section 3.11.2 of the Nigeria Broadcasting Code provides that “the broadcaster shall ensure that law enforcement is upheld at all times in a matter depicting that law and order are socially superior to or more desirable than crime and anarchy.
“Attention is also drawn to Section 5.6.3 of The Code which requires Broadcasters to be mindful of materials that may cause disaffection, incite to panic or rift in the society in the use of User Generated Content (UGC).”
The press statement concluded by describing as ‘unpatriotic’, the continuous patronage of Twitter by any broadcaster thereby enjoining strict compliance.
Recall that the Federal Government of Nigeria had on Friday June 4, 2021, suspended indefinitely, the operations of Twitter in Nigeria.
This action is widely perceived as an angry reaction to the deletion of President Muhammadu Buhari’s post via his official Twitter handle by the social media giant.
It has continued to generate condemnation from several quarters including the United States of America, the European Union, the Republic of Ireland, the United Kingdom, Canada amongst others.