A leading pro-media, pro-democracy Civil Rights Advocacy group:- HUMAN RIGHTS WRITERS ASSOCIATION OF NIGERIA (HURIWA) has asked President Muhammadu Buhari to respect absolutely the wide ranging, well considered, thoughtful, logical, sound and unimpeachable decision of the jury of the Court of the Economic Community of the West African States (ECOWAS COURT).
“We have always known that President Buhari acted ultra vires the law of Nigeria and especially the well grounded fundamental right provision of the Constitution when he arbitrarily banned the use of the social media platform of Twitter by over 40 million Nigerians following the decision of twitter to delete his post deemed inimical to the rules of the online platform”.
HURIWA through the National Coordinator Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko and the National Media Affairs Director Miss Zainab Yusuf, has tasked the Nigerian government to comply forthwith and obey the judgement of the ECOWAS Court.
HURIWA said since Nigeria is the home of ECOWAS headquarters and a good member of ECOWAS, it must obey the decision of the ECOWAS Court particularly when the current ruling on Twitter vitiated and invalidated his government’s draconian and military styled attack against the Constitutionally guaranteed human Rights clearly spelt out in chapter four of the constitution of the Federal Republic of 1999 especially section 39 (1) and 40.”
Specifically, Section 39. (1) of the constitution says: “Every person shall be entitled to freedom of expression, including freedom to hold opinions and to receive and impart ideas and information without interference.
Section 40. Every person shall be entitled to assemble freely and associate with other persons, and in particular he may form or belong to any political party, trade union or any other association for the protection of his interests: Provided that the provisions of this section shall not derogate from the powers conferred by this Constitution on the Independent National Electoral Commission with respect to political parties to which that Commission does not accord recognition.” HURIWA said government cab not ibfrunge on the citizens rights to associate lawfully with people on the World wide Web through the Social media.
HURIWA recalled that the ECOWAS Court of Justice in Abuja on Tuesday delivered a landmark ruling as justices restrained President Muhammadu Buhari administration and its agents from arresting or prosecuting Nigerians using Twitter.
The court also protected social media service providers, radio and television broadcast stations and others from prosecution pending the hearing and determination of this suit.