Following the ban on the use of Twitter, the threat to prosecute Twitter users and the overall constriction of civic space by policies and directives of the Federal Government of Nigeria and its agencies, the Nigerian Bar Association had, on 18th June 2021 filed an action at the Federal High Court (Lagos Judicial Division) challenging the constitutionality and overall legality of the said policies and directives of the Federal Government.
The court papers which named the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, the Attorney-General of the Federation, the Minister of Information and the Nigerian Communications Commission as 1st to 4th Defendants were signed by NBA’s 7 member legal team.
In the suit, the NBA is seeking, among other things, a declaration that the ban or suspension of the microblogging site is unlawful, a declaration that any prosecution of users of the site will be unconstitutional, a declaration that the ban affects the business, employment and economic activities of lawyers and Nigerians generally and an order of the Federal High Court mandating all mobile network and internet service providers to unblock the use of the microblogging and social media site.
The suit has been adjourned to 4th October 2021 for hearing alongside similar applications filed by other interested parties.
Dr. Rapulu Nduka
Nigerian Bar Association