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Fact-Check: Twitter did not apologise to Nigeria over Buhari’s tweet

Pascal Oparada

A screenshot making the rounds that Twitter has issued an apology to the Nigerian government for deleting President Muhammadu Buhari’s civil war tweet is not true.

According to the screenshot:

“We’re committed to peace, progress and freedom of the Nigerian people. We have reviewed our actions & are in communication with the Nigerian government & promise to respect the laws & sovereignty of Nigeria,” the screenshot read.

After careful analysis by our data and analytics desk, it is proven that the said tweet did not come from Twitter.

The findings

The language is very much below the standards used by the microblogging site The repeated use of the ampersand sign (&) appeared in the said tweet three times. Twitter does not communicate official issues of such magnitude in that way.

The said tweet lacks a timestamp which confers authority on a tweet and date of the tweet.

The said tweet is allegedly from Twitter’s policy handle. It lacks the @ sign, which is the official handle (@Policy) Twitter uses to communicate its policy to people and governments.

That same handle was used to give reasons why former US President, Donald Trump’s Twitter account (@reaDonalTrump) was suspended. The reason was elaborately stated in Twitter’s blog. It did not do so in this case with Buhari’s deleted tweet.

The hashtag, #KeepItOn, which is embedded in the said tweet, lacks the fire icon that Twitter created for the purpose of urging users in Nigeria to keep on tweeting. It created a similar hashtag icon for #EndSARS which came with a clenched fist with the Nigerian colours.

While there may be talks behind the scenes between Nigeria and Twitter to find a way to end the current crisis, there is not an official statement from either Twitter or the Nigerian government.

The screenshot is misleading and calculated to hoodwink people.