By Ifeoma Ejiofor
Valentine Ozigbo, business mogul and international sports developer, has condemned the suspension of Twitter’s operations in Nigeria by the Nigerian government.
On Friday, June 4, 2021, President Muhammadu Buhari-led central government announced a suspension of the operations of the social media platform after Twitter deleted a tweet by the Nigerian president which the platform considered harmful to its community.
In a statement issued on Sunday, June 6, 2021, Mr Ozigbo called on the federal government to reconsider its stand on the suspension of the operations of the microblogging platform. According to him, the ban contradicts the constitutional rights of Nigerians to express their thoughts freely and access information.
The respected business expert remarked that the move by the federal government was “hasty and not well thought through”.
“The suspension of the operations of the social media giant, Twitter, by Nigeria’s central government is regrettable”, Ozigbo said.
“It is evident that this decision was done in haste and not well thought through by the authorities. It contradicts the constitutional right of Nigerians to free speech and also to access information.
“The economic consequences of such actions ought to have been reviewed before such pronouncements. Twitter is a platform that drives business and creates jobs for millions of Nigerians, especially the youth.
“As a business leader and investor in technology and communications, I appreciate the role of social networking platforms like Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook in driving business and the economy.
“This suspension will have untold negative consequences to our economy, our image as a democracy, and the youth who use Twitter as a platform to advance their careers,” Ozigbo concluded.
Ozigbo, the immediate past President and Group CEO of Transcorp Plc, called on the Nigerian government to think about investor confidence and how specific government policies will affect our ease of attracting Foreign Direct Investments.
“Nigeria is a country with vast opportunities for foreign investments. As a matter of national interest, the government should consider the common good while implementing certain policies” Ozigbo, a frontrunner in the upcoming Anambra gubernatorial polls, said.
“I therefore condemn the suspension of Twitter in Nigeria and call on the federal government to reverse the ban and save the country from further isolation and embarrassment.”