First, I have made it clear that I am against any defense of the nonsensical where a President evoked war against a section of a country because he has problems with those breaking the law. My position has remained: go after anyone doing something illegal, and do not lump Nigerians as a block on criminal matters. It seems the government has understood that, and has effectively changed its argument against Twitter!
This is the new point: any company that needs Nigeria and Nigerians to make money must also pay taxes to Nigeria. In other words, Twitter does not have an office in Nigeria but Nigerians ship money to Twitter for adverts and promos. That has to change. If the government had used this logic to ban Twitter, I would have supported it. I mean if they can get it done on Twitter, Netflix and other media platforms with no corporate presence in Nigeria, we should support it.
There is a reason for that: while you can watch your Netflix shows in Lagos and ship money to its American headquarters, directly or indirectly, that money is not helping your city in any way. The government thinks we can force Netflix and others to pay attention to Nigeria with some taxes.
This new argument is certainly something that will break Twitter as other African nations can rally around it. The rumour that Twitter had reached across to Nigeria could be connected to this “case” because Twitter has all to lose now, if countries see everything from this economic angle.
Minister Lai Mohammed also spoke concerning the payment of tax by tech giants in the country.
He explained that most of the OTT and social media platforms operating in Nigeria do not have offices either do they pay taxes for the billions earned.
Henceforth, the Federal government has resolved to ensure other social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram be registered in the country and adverts have been published to this effect.
The information minister, despite criticism by Human Rights groups, insists that freedom of speech has not been stifled as a result of the ban.
He maintained that other social media platforms are still available for use.
For that, Mr. Mohammed had a great day, but he has to get his boss to correct his blown statement nevertheless!---
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