The Federal Government has again said that there is no plan by any of its agencies to restrict Nigerians from accessing the social media.
The Minister of Communications, Dr. Adebayo Shittu, who made this known yesterday, said Nigerians are free to discuss government policies and engage in responsible political debates, expose corruption and decently express their opinions via the social media, without the use of maligning or hate speech.
He spoke in Abuja while addressing participants at the venue of a National Social Media Retreat on the theme “Social Media for Good Governance”.
The minister charged operators of social media platform to guard against the distractions the social media generates and focus on their respective key deliverables.
“It behoves everyone here to imbibe and promote the ideas of excellent government-citizen interaction based on the use of cultured language, publication of facts and respect for the governed as the source from which Government derives legitimacy’’, he said.
Dr. Shittu said allowing freedom of expression on the internet is proof that the Federal Government genuinely adheres to the principles of democracy.
He disclosed that the Federal Government would adopt social media in carrying out e-service delivery and use same to shape government’s policies for good governance.
The minister said the government would also propound friendly and secure policies that ensure the use of technology-based social media which are development-driven.
He urged key players in the private sector to take advantage of the social media to achieve positive image for Nigeria.
In her address, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Communications, Mrs. Nkechi Ejele, said the event was organized because the government realized the importance of social media tools and their applications for the dissemination of government policies.