Nigerian online social media users have criticised the Senate President, David Mark, for reportedly seeking a check on the use of social media by Nigerians.
They said it was an attempt to frustrate public criticism of government.
Mark had last Thursday, while declaring open a two-day retreat for Senate Press corps in Umuahia, Abia State, reportedly said the check became necessary as people used the media to demean their leaders. He added that there was no opportunity for retraction of information in such media.
He reportedly said, “We need to change our attitude on how we report things about our country and we should emulate the foreign reporters who never report negative things about their countries.”
Facebook and Twitter users however, took a swipe at Mark, saying he allegedly antagonised the use of mobile phones by average Nigerians some years ago.
The comments had the senate president trending on social media platforms.
A Facebook post by Agba Jalingo read, “Attention: Occupy David Mark. The senate president must be stopped from his moves to restrict the use of social media in Nigeria, as it has been done in militarised countries of the world. He has been quoted as saying the social media is being used to insult leaders. We are not in North Korea, this is a democracy.
“Occupy his telephone line and help save our only freedom of expression. Call, text and even flash 080350088**. Please re-broadcast.”
A twitter user, Adenike Adebayo, also wrote, “People like Mark represent the last vestiges of a dying paradigm. We must hasten that process to avoid poisoning of the polity.”
Similarly, Segun Agbede, tweeted, “Mark says the foreign media don’t say negative things about their country. He obviously hasn’t been reading British and American newspapers.”
Another another user, Deejay, tweeted, “Mark should say something more reasonable when next he’s talking to the press.”
Chidi in his tweet said, “When Mark was a minister, he said telephone wasn’t for poor people. Today, he says social media should be banned.”
Another twitter user, Ekekeee.com, wrote, “Let Mark legislate against us using new media. At least, let it be one achievement he can boast of in his years” involvent in our renascent democracy.
Likewise, Obi Henry tweeted, “If Mark had his way, he would have shut down these handles. Mark who said telephones were not for the poor is now advocating social media censorship. An apple doesn’t fall far from its tree.”