Nigeria to require social media platforms to open local offices


Facebook, TikTok and Twitter apps are seen on a smartphone in this illustration taken July 13, 2021. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration

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ABUJA, June 14 (Reuters) – Online platforms like Twitter (TWTR.N), Facebook (META.O) and Tiktok will be required to register and open offices in Nigeria and appoint contact persons with the government, to draft regulations of the information technology development agency salon.

The code of practice for “Internet Intermediate/Interactive Computer Service Platforms” was aimed at combating online abuse, including disinformation and misinformation, the National Information Technology Development Agency said ( NITDA) in the regulations posted on its website.

A June 13 statement from the agency’s spokesperson said the regulations were developed with input from Twitter, Facebook, WhatsApp, Instagram, Google (GOOGL.O) and TikTok, among others.

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The platforms are popular in Nigeria, the most populous country in Africa with over 200 million people.

NIDTA said the platforms would be required to provide users or authorized government agencies with relevant information, including for the purpose of maintaining security and public order.

They should also file annual reports with NITDA with the number of registered users in Nigeria, number of complaints received and content removed due to misinformation and misinformation.

Earlier this year, Nigeria lifted a ban on Twitter, saying the US-based company had agreed to set up a local office among other deals with authorities. Read more

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Reporting by Camillus Eboh, writing by MacDonald Dzirutwe; Editing by Kirsten Donovan

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