The Secretary-General of the Commonwealth, Rt. Hon Patricia Scotland QC, has said the Commonwealth was closely monitoring developments around the suspension of Twitter and allegations of repression of the rights to freedom of expression, access to information, media freedom, as well as disregard for the rule of law in Nigeria.
The statement by the Commonwealth followed an Urgent Appeal on June 6 by Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) urging Ms Scotland to apply the Commonwealth Charter to hold the Nigerian government to account over the unlawful suspension of Twitter in Nigeria, and the resulting repression of freedom of expression, access to information and media freedom.
Responding, Scotland in a letter dated July 22, 2021, and sent to SERAP, said she had been following the developments in Nigeria very closely and was engaging the relevant stakeholders.
The letter signed on behalf of the Secretary General by Roger Koranteng, Officer in Charge, Governance and Peace Directorate, read in part: “Please be assured that the Secretariat will remain engaged with the authorities in Nigeria and encourage a speedy resolution of this matter.
“All Commonwealth member countries including Nigeria have committed themselves to upholding freedom of expression as one of the core values and principles of the Commonwealth Charter, which underscores a commitment to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and other relevant human rights covenants and international instruments.”