The Nigerian Government has said it suspects that social media giant, Twitter, supports agitation for the separate state of Biafra.
This followed its decision to delete President Muhammadu Buhari’s tweet in which he made reference to the Nigerian Civil War (1967-1970).
Buhari had in a series of tweets on his verified Twitter handle, @Mbuhari, said: “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.”
This generated public criticism and outrage with many Nigerians asking Twitter to ban Buhari from Twitter, even if it will be temporarily.
Twitter later deleted the President's tweet and said, "This Tweet Violated the Twitter Rules.”
However, the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, swiftly accused Twitter of double standard, saying it ignored inciting tweets by Nnamdi Kanu, the leader of the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and others.
He accused Twitter of ignoring Kalu’s tweets in which he encouraged the killing of police personnel.
He also accused Twitter of showing bias against the government during #EndSARS protests in 2020.
He said: “Twitter may have its own rules, it’s not the universal rule. If Mr. President, anywhere in the world 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, any organisation that 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? Are we the ones guilty of double standards? I don’t see anywhere in the world where an organisation, a person will stay somewhere outside Nigeria, and will direct his members to attack the symbols of authority, the police, the military, especially when that organisation has been proscribed. By whatever name, you can’t justify giving orders to kill policemen or to kill anybody you do not agree with.”