Nigeria: FG to ban civil servants from using social media

THE NEWSGHOST, NIGERIA — Expressing concern over an increase in the leakage of official documents, the federal government (FG) of Nigeria is considering entirely banning civil servants from accessing any of the popular social media platforms describing their involvement as “improper”.

The conversations of these workers on sites like WhatsApp, Facebook, and Twitter are said to border on the disclosure of classified information and tendering of false accusations against certain other officials. 

Under the law, these actions go against the Public Service Rules. The Permanent Secretary, Lawal Ado Dutsin-ma (Administration) urged civil servants to be guided in observing proper conduct and further directed heads of  government ministries, departments, agencies, and parastatals to inform their staff on how to keep in check.

This move comes as a disputable step following the backlash government received earlier this year over the reported decision of a parastatal to begin monitoring its employees activities online; said to be in accordance with government’s guidelines on hate speech. There are also a number of other earlier threats and denials on the development of other measures to control the activities of the general public.

Is this another notch in the series of discussions on the advancement of censorship or are these precautions wholly necessary?

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