A recent article on the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) website has paid homage to the successful Social Media campaign that followed the detention of Yusuf Isyiaka Onimisi aka @Ciaxon.
According to the media giant, Nigeria has a very lively social media activism scene.
Yusuf was detained by the federal government after posting tweets about the recent jail break in Abuja.
The article attributed his release to the successful campaign that was launched by Fola Lawal.
In an interview Fola Lawal was quoted as saying, I would say with 90% certainty that if we didn’t start this campaign, the guy would still be inside, the government knows the weight of social media,”
Another Nigeria journalist interviewed for the article was Salihu Tanko Yakasai of Freedom Radio in Kano. He also believes Onimisi would almost certainly still be detained had it not been for the protests on social media. “People often disappear for no reason or with no explanation,” he says. “God knows what would have happened to him.” Social media, he says, has become “the single most effective way” to hold the government to account in Nigeria.
Nigeria was an “early adopter” of social media says BBC Africa’s Miriam Quansah and, together with Kenya, has perhaps the most active social media activism scene on the continent. The #LightUpNigeria campaign – calling for better access to electricity – was an early example and came a full five years ago.
The full article can be found here.