As witnessed by the #EndSARS campaign in October 2020, the social network has been used by 40 million Nigerians and has become an important tool for social protest.
Twitter was suspended, and the government ordered the audiovisual media to delete their accounts in a gesture “patriotic”, Deeply shocked Nigeria, a young country with a wide network of people, and this social network is an important tool for social protest. According to data from the Lagos statistical research company NOI Polls, more than 120 million Nigerians now have access to the Internet, and nearly 20% of them (40 million people) say they have a Twitter account.
This extremely high number—for example, only 8 million users in France—can be specifically interpreted as “Due to its large and young population, and the number of its diaspora, especially in the United States, or due to the global popularity of Nigerian stars” Movie or African pop music, AFP analysis Manon Fouriscot, expert in the use of social networks in Africa and co-founder of Connected Africa.
But research also shows that, unlike other social networks, Twitter is widely used in Nigeria “Speak for the silent” or “Challenge the government on the country’s problems”, According to NOI polls. “Twitter has increasingly become a means for civil society to express themselves, mobilize and remind international public opinion in Nigeria and the African continent”, Emphasize Manon Fouriscot.
In October 2020, the #EndSARS movement against SARS police force violence has evolved into a youth anti-power movement, which first broke out on Twitter before taking to the streets. Spread by afropop idols to millions of subscribers, and then reposted by major international influencers, #EndSARS is the most shared hashtag in the world in two days. The subsequent demonstrations were the most important demonstrations in modern Nigerian history, which caused people to worry about power instability before being suppressed.
“In recent years, the Nigerian government has strengthened its control over online media”, Points out Kian Vesteinsson, a researcher at Freedom House, a human rights watchdog. “Nigerian journalists and news groups claim to have become targets of digital surveillance and victims of cyber attacks related to security forces”, Assure this expert on technology and democracy. However, by suspending Twitter completely indefinitely, the authorities have taken new steps to ensure that the platform hopes to disrupt that by allowing Biafra separatists to express their views and deleting President Mohamedu Buhari’s tweets. Country’s stability.