SME’s, tech coys, others count losses as Twitter ban persists

As the ban placed on Twitter operations in Nigeria enters its tenth week, small businesses and other tech companies have continued to count their losses, and have also appealed to the federal government to revisit the ban.

The Federal Government had on June 4, 2021, announced a ban on Twitter and through the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) directed telecoms companies, Internet Service Providers (ISPs) to block access to the platform.

According to research by Netblocks, the local economy loses at least N2,177,089,051 ($6,014,390) daily, since the indefinite suspension was slammed on the platform.

Speaking on the impact of the ban on businesses, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of JE Stores, Jadesola Praise, said her sales had dipped since the ban was imposed because she depends on the platform to reach her numerous customers.

“My sales have been affected. I am hopeful that the government and Twitter will reach an agreement soon so that the nightmare will come to an end,” she said.

Also, a Lagos-based entrepreneur, Ogechi Egemonu, said she was selling more than N500,000 worth of watches, shoes and handbags on Twitter weekly. Now, with the suspension, Egemonu does not know how she will cope.

With a huge youthful population, analysts estimate that Twitter has about 40 million users in the country. They say a sizable number of citizens use Twitter to hustle and make ends meet.

According to former Director-General of the Lagos State Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI),Dr. Muda Yusuf, many businesses, especially SMEs, leverage this digital platform for marketing and other promotional activities.