As the world marks the International Right to Know Day, Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project, SERAP, has urged the government of President Goodluck Jonathan to drop threat of attacks against social media, as “any such threat can only continue to strangle freedom of expression and limit the accountability of government.”
In a statement, Monday, by SERAP executive director Adetokunbo Mumuni, the organisation stated that, “The 2011 Report of the UN Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Opinion and Expression has underscored the importance of freedom of expression on the Internet, and urged governments not to arbitrarily restrict this right.”
According to the organization: “The call by government officials for censorship of social media is entirely unnecessary as social media has played an important role in educating the ordinary citizens about the performance of their governments, and on issues of transparency and accountability.
“Social media are important to the work of human rights defenders everywhere. Any attempt to undermine this work will be resisted by civil society through national and international legal actions.”
SERAP added: “Freedom of expression on the Internet is a fundamental freedom. It is absolutely crucial to citizens’ rights to communicate and associate, and to the enjoyment of their other human rights, including the right to know how their governments are run, and to hold their leaders accountable .”