“Buhari government can sign ‘rules of engagement’ with the San Francisco-based social media giant on Twitter usage in Nigeria”
“What I see is that on both sides, there are issues that can be resolved between Twitter and the (Federal) Government and I think what they have done is not a ban but a suspension”
With the groundswell of scathing condemnation trailing Twitter suspension by the Federal Government, another governor has urged a restrain by the authorities, this time, Lagos Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu.
Pleading with the government to lift the suspension, Sanwo-Olu said it has made millions of Nigerians to lose money and source of income.
Oyo Gov. Seyi Makinde, ex-Ekiti governor, Ayo Fayose, Prof. Wole Soyinka and the Nigerian Bar Association had criticized the presidential directive, calling it illegal and an affront on democracy, rule of law and repression of freedom of speech and press freedom.
Speaking on Monday on Arise TV programme monitored by Persecondnews, “The Morning Show’’, the governor declared: “The decision to ban the microblogging site was affecting the youth.”
“Lagos is hurting, our youths are hurting, Nigeria is hurting, let us understand the issues and put it behind us so that we don’t politicise it.
“People are losing money but there are also security issues. Let us be circumspect and not throw the baby away with the bathwater,” Persecondnews quotes the governor as saying.
Ambivalent about the propriety of President Muhammadu Buhari’s action — wrong or right, Sanwo-Olu said the President must have taken the decision based “on the information he received”.
As a way out, he suggested that the Buhari government can sign ‘rules of engagement’ with the San Francisco-based social media giant on Twitter usage in Nigeria.
Sanwo-Olu said: “Regarding the specifics around Twitter, I cannot sit down here with all of the responsibilities that I have and fly (sic) the commander-in-chief of the Armed Forces.
“He would have the prognosis and security information that I do not have. I cannot begin to say that was he’s done is right or wrong.
“What I see is that on both sides, there are issues that can be resolved between Twitter and the (Federal) Government and I think what they have done is not a ban but a suspension.
” So, in the period of suspension, let us sit down…we need to have that conversation with them (Twitter).
“In other climes, they sign some underlying agreements on the rules of engagement. I am not sure that is happening here.
“Having said that, the Federal Government can also handle things a lot better because of the number of e-commerce, because of the number of youths that are doing a lot of things on the internet and we cannot throw that away.”
Harping on restrain, Sanwo-Olu said: “I believe there could be better restraint and management from both sides. In the next one or two days, let us see that happen.
“Our youths are hurting, Nigeria is hurting.”