Social media blocked in Liberia as people protest against corruption and dictatorship

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Liberian citizens gather in the Capital Monrovia on Friday to protest against corruption and dictatorship in the country.

To subdue the protest, the government blocked social media according to the Internet Monitoring Platform, NetBlocks.

The platforms blocked include WhatsApp, Instagram, Snapchat, Facebook, Google’s Gmail service and website of The Associated Press were among the sites affected, Netblocks said.

The Managing Director of Liberia’s Daily Observer Newspaper, Bai Sama G, in his statement, said, “Most Journalists and some citizens are using Virtual Private Networks (VPN) to bypass the restrictions.

Liberia’s Minister of information, Eugene Nagbe, said, Social platforms were shut down temporarily for security purpose.

He added that some of the social media seized have been restored. He admitted that the act by protesters is not bad but the security of the nation is far more important.

A group called Council Patriots organized the protest, and claim that it’s a collective decision of the citizens, civil society, activist youth workers and major political parties.

Protesters have submitted a petition to the President who has been in office for one year.

The content of the document reads “Liberians are suffering harsh economic conditions being caused and encouraged by bad governance, the deliberate and wanton collapse of integrity system”.

 Nagbe said, “The President is working to restore some of the issues that he inherited, the opposition is now using the streets to get what they didn’t get at the ballot box.”

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