Latest News (Foreign/Local) - Entertainment - Beauty Tips - Inspirations - Events- Latest Gist and Gossip.

Wednesday, 9 June 2021

SERAP Drags Buhari Before ECOWAS Court Over Twitter Ban In Nigeria


Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP), and 176 concerned Nigerians have filed a lawsuit against President Buhari-led -administration over what it called, “the unlawful suspension of Twitter in Nigeria, criminalisation of Nigerians and other people using Twitter.

In the suit No ECW/CCJ/APP/23/21 filed on Tuesday, before the ECOWAS Community Court of Justice in Abuja, SERAP and the concerned Nigerians are seeking: “An order of interim injunction restraining the Federal Government from implementing its suspension of Twitter in Nigeria, and subjecting anyone including media houses, broadcast stations using Twitter in Nigeria, to harassment, intimidation, arrest and criminal prosecution, pending the hearing and determination of the substantive suit.”

In the suit filed by Solicitor to SERAP, Femi Falana SAN, the Plaintiffs contended that “if this application is not urgently granted, the Federal Government will continue to arbitrarily suspend Twitter and threaten to impose criminal and other sanctions on Nigerians, telecommunication companies, media houses, broadcast stations and other people using Twitter in Nigeria, the perpetual order sought in this suit might be rendered nugatory.”

Meanwhile, no date has been fixed for the hearing of the interim application and the substantive suit.

The suit, read in part: 

“The suspension of Twitter is aimed at intimidating and stopping Nigerians from using Twitter and other social media platforms to assess government policies, expose corruption, and criticize acts of official impunity by the agents of the Federal Government.

“The free communication of information and ideas about public and political issues between citizens and elected representatives is essential. This implies a free press and other media able to comment on public issues without censor or restraints and to inform public opinion. The public also has a corresponding right to receive media output.

"Freedom of expression is a fundamental human right and the full enjoyment of this right is central to achieving individual freedom and to developing democracy. It is not only the cornerstone of democracy but indispensable to a thriving civil society.

“The arbitrary action by the Federal Government and its agents have negatively impacted millions of Nigerians who carry on their daily businesses and operational activities on Twitter. The suspension has also impeded the freedom of expression of millions of Nigerians, who criticize and influence government policies through the microblogging app.

“The suspension of Twitter is arbitrary, and there is no law in Nigeria today permitting the prosecution of people simply for peacefully exercising their human rights through Twitter and other social media platforms.

0 comments:

Post a Comment