… Twitter deletes Buhari’s controversial ‘treat them in a language they understand’ post

…Ohanaeze youths fumes, tell Buhari ‘you’ve pushed us enough,’ petitions ICC, UK, others

…Fmr presidential candidate, Moghalu, others kick, say Buhari’s threat ‘unpresidential’

… As FG kicks, accuses Twitter of double standards, role in Biafra agitation

AS controversy continues to trail President Muhammadu Buhari’s post on Twitter on the Nigeria civil war between 1967 and 1970 during which many lives especially those of women and children were lost, the social media giant has deleted the tweet. It would be recalled that the tweet which was posted on the President’s Twitter handle on Tuesday read in part, “many of those misbehaving today are too young to be aware of the destruction and loss of lives that occurred during the Nigerian Civil War.” The president further threatened in the post that “those of us in the fields for 30 months, who went through the war, will treat them in the language they understand.”

However, the social media giant simply said that the tweet violated its rules, with a tag: ‘Not The Kind Of Word’ and deleted it. “This Tweet violated the Twitter Rules,” the microblogging site said in place of the deleted tweet. The provocative tweet had sparked reactions from many Nigerians and organizations that tackled the president over the statement citing his reference to the civil war in which millions of Nigerians, mostly the Igbo were killed as a threat to commit human right violations. Twitter did not however provide further details on the action but said that its policy referenced that when it takes such a measure, it is sometimes because “the behaviour violates the Twitter rules.”

Twitter rules provide that users may not: “Threaten violence against an individual or a group of people; engage in the targeted harassment of someone, or incite other people to do so; nor promote violence against, threaten, or harass other people on the basis of race, ethnicity, national origin, caste, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, religious affiliation, age, disability, or serious disease.” In its reaction to President Buhari’s statement, the Ohanaeze Ndigbo Youth Council, OYC, condemned it in its entirety, stressing that the president had pushed Ndigbo to the point “not good again to the people.” The group also petitioned the International Criminal Court, ICC, the United Kingdom and United States of America, USA, among others, to intervene, alleging that the president’s tweet was another subtle plan for attack against Ndigbo that they want to destroy his government. In a statement by the group in Awka, Anambra State capital, yesterday, its national president, Mazi Okwu Nnabuike said “enough is enough.”

According to him, the president had in a statement warned that those who wanted to destroy his government would receive “the shock of their lives as they would be treated in a language they would understand,” claiming that Buhari had prepared the ground for another attack on Ndigbo by security forces. “We write to alert the international community on another planned attack against Ndigbo. “This is sadly coming few days after Ndigbo held a memorial in honour of over five million lives wasted, including children, during the civil war. “We are more concerned that this is coming from the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces and President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. “It is quite sad that while the same Buhari presidency is busy romancing with Boko Haram and other bandits in the north, it has in another stroke threatened massacre of Ndigbo simply for agitating to have their own country. “We are, therefore, alerting the United Nations, the United States of America, the International Criminal Court, ICC, UK and other international organisations of this looming attack in Igboland, as Mr. President has given the security agencies licence to wipe our people out as can be deduced from his recent statement. “It is thus imperative that we send this SOS message to the international community as Buhari’s hatred for Ndigbo has now reached extreme level,” the Ohanaeze youths further stated. In his reaction, former deputy governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, and presidential candidate of the Young Progressives Party, YPP, in the 2019 general elections, Professor Kingsley Moghalu noted that Buhari’s threat was not the kind of word to use as the president.

Speaking in an interview on Channels Television’s ‘Sunrise Daily’ programme yesterday, Mogahlu said: “I think (your) language matters when you are a leader and when you are facing many crises, because that language can be interpreted in many ways. “Bringing up evocations that are very unpleasant is not the best approach; the president should have assured Nigerians that his government will continue to work to ensure the safety of lives and properties,” he counseled. For its part, the federal government kicked against Twitter that on Wednesday deleted President Buhari’s tweet that threatened to treat some people in the “language they understand.”

The presidency questioned the role of Twitter in the secessionist agitation in the South-East following the social media giant’s deletion of a tweet by the president evoking the memories of the civil war to threaten “those misbehaving in the region.” Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, who reacted to the tweet deletion at the end of the Federal Executive Council, FEC, meeting at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, wondered why Twitter would delete President Buhari’s post without doing same to the inciting ones that had been posted by Nnamdi Kanu, the leader of the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOP. He alleged that the role of Twitter in Nigeria was suspect, noting that the social media platform also backed opponents of government during the #EndSARS protests.


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