Our engagement with Twitter has been fruitful – Lai Mohammed – Channels Television

Information and Culture Minister Lai Mohammed said on Thursday that the federal government’s engagement with the microblogging site Twitter has been fruitful.

He said this while receiving the United States Deputy Assistant Secretary for African Affairs, Akunna Cook, at his office in Abuja, the nation’s capital.

Mohammed again explained the reason for the federal government’s ban on Twitter in the country, saying some people were using the microblogging site to sow disunity in the country.

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“Twitter has been suspended because it has become a go-to platform for those working to disunite this country,” he said.

“It’s a country of 200 ethnic groups, very multi-religious and there are a lot of fourth lines that Twitter was exploiting.

“Prior to the suspension, there were a lot of advisories and warnings. I am happy to say that our engagement with Twitter has been very productive and helpful for both parties. The outcome of this engagement will help us not only in our engagement with Twitter, but in our engagement with all social media platforms.

US Ambassador to Nigeria, Mary Beth Leonard; Information and Culture Minister Lai Mohammed and US Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs Akunna Cook during a courtesy visit to the Minister in Abuja on February 17, 2022.

The minister also called for collaboration between Nigeria and the United States to reposition the country’s creative and cultural industry, especially to improve the quality of Nollywood films.

According to him, the Nigerian government is working hard to reposition the creative and cultural industry, which has been hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic, due to the sector’s immense contribution to the country’s GDP.

He listed some of the Nigerian government’s strategic interventions in the creative industry, including the Central Bank of Nigeria’s N22.9 billion creative industry funding initiatives; the billion naira industry bank Nollyfund; another 1 billion naira fund for fashion and beauty from the Bank of Industry; N-Power Creative and Project Act Nollywood Federal Grant.

In his remarks, Cook called on the Nigerian government to invest in the digital sector, saying it is the future of the nation.

She commended the Federal Government for the refurbishment of the National Theater in Lagos which she said will create an ecosystem and provide phenomenal opportunities for creative industry stakeholders.

The US official also pledged her country was ready to work with Nigeria to boost the country’s creative industry.

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