Though it has not been ascertained, there is a high possibility of effecting the social media shutdown on November 7
Ghana Police Service has hinted at a possible shutdown on all social media platforms on elections day.
Inspector General of Police John Kudalor has indicated that the abuse of social media during elections often creates unnecessary tension in the country, which subsequently leads to violence in most cases.
According to IGP Kudalor, yanking off social media would help prevent such abuses by politicians and the public as well to fuel lies about their opponents. He explained that the social media plays a significant role in stirring up conflicts during elections, by instigating unnecessary tensions among the public.
Not quite long ago, President John Mahama, while addressing Ghanaians leaving in the UK, said that social media has been fueling and encouraging lies about his government. He urged Ghanaians not to pay attention to social media propaganda but to the positive achievements realized by his government.
Though it has not been ascertained, there is a high possibility of effecting the social media shutdown on November 7. According to research, Facebook and Twitter are the two most popular platforms used in Ghana.
If government eventually implements this act, it would not be the first time such a drastic move is being made in an African country. It could be recalled that in February, the Ugandan government shut down social media in the country, when the president Yoweri Museveni was re-elected for a fifth term in office. The Ugandan president called the move a “security measure to avert lies”.
Notwithstanding the ban in February, it was repeated when he was sworn into office in May. This had triggered lots of criticisms especially among human rights activists who accused the government of suppressing free speech.
IGP John Kudalor said that the police might follow the example set by the African country. He also added that the police was considering the possibility of setting up social media accounts of their own. We’ll just have to wait and see if this could be effected in Ghana