The Nigerian government on Wednesday had listed conditions that must be met by Twitter to reopen in Nigeria.
It said the firm must be registered with the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC); it should obtain the licence to operate in the country from the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) and it must pay taxes to the Nigerian government.
In addition, it must disallow its platform to be used by people trying to destabilise the country, the government added.
Minister of Information and Culture Lai Mohammed revealed these conditions yesterday at Aso Villa after the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting.
Mohammed, who explained that Twitter had made contact with the government for “senior-level talks”, maintained that what is important to the government “is the sovereignty of Nigeria”.
The minister also said all other Over-The-Top (OTT) service providers must run as real businesses in Nigeria by paying their taxes.
Speaking on what led to the suspension of Twitter, he said the platform provided an avenue for people that are threatening the corporate existence of Nigeria.
According to him, the owner of Twitter helped to fund last year’s #EndSARS protest while allowing the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu, to use the platform to call for the killing of policemen.
He said Twitter failed to take down Kanu’s tweets despite repeated requests to do so.
The minister said freedom of speech had not been restrained by the suspension of Twitter because Nigerians could still use other platforms such as Facebook and Instagram.
He also denied the speculation that the suspension was not effective, arguing that Twitter is losing money as a result of the action.