The Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed has stated that the Attorney General of the Federation(AGF) and the Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, has the power to prosecute the General Overseer of the Redeemed Christian Church of God(RCCG), Pastor Enoch Adeboye and the General Overseer of Deeper Life Bible Church, Pastor Williams Folorunso Kumuyi, for defying the Federal Government’s ban on Twitter.
According to the Minister, FG has suspended the operations of Twitter in the country, hence the usage of the microblogging site by any Nigerian is prohibited.
Recall the AGF had directed the Director of Public Prosecution of the Federation to begin an immediate prosecution of individuals who violate the Twitter suspension order of the Federal Government.
Following the suspension of Twitter’s operations in Nigeria, many Nigerians have opted for the use of Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) in order to bypass restrictions.
Meanwhile, both Adeboye and Kumuyi also took to their respective official Twitter handle to justify the need to lift the ban on the microblogging site.
According to Adeboye, his use of Twitter is in line with Article 19 of the United Nations, UN, Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR).
In a tweet, the RCCG General Overseer said the church is domiciled in over 170 countries of the world, hence the need to continue tweeting.
“The Redeemed Christian Church of God is domiciled in more than 170 Nations & Territories.
“The tweets here are in accordance to Article 19 of the UN universal declaration of Human Rights,” the renowned man of God tweeted.
Similarly, Kumuyi, who also took to his official Twitter handle stated that, “In view of the Twitter ban in Nigeria, please note that the content shared on this handle is targeted at a global audience in more than 5 continents and over 100 Nations and we share the content from any of these locations.”
Reacting during an interview session with BBC Africa Focus on Monday, the Minister stated that the AGF has the power to prosecute anyone who violates the directive of the FG.
The minister also stressed that the use of Twitter was undermining Nigeria’s corporate existence.
In his words, “The government has suspended indefinitely, the operations of Twitter in Nigeria because of the persistent use of the platform for activities that are capable of undermining Nigeria’s corporate existence and the government.
“Also directed the National Broadcasting Commission to immediately commence the process of licencing all social media operations in Nigeria.
“The attorney-general has made it clear that if anyone violates the regulation, that such person will be prosecuted. I think it is the right of the attorney-general to decide who to prosecute.”