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Nigerians react to Tiktok ban threat

NEWSMAN, Abuja – Nigerians have taken to social media to express their views on the ban of the popular Chinese- owned video app, TikTok, where users create and share short dancing or lip-synching videos.

Since its launch in 2017, TikTok has amassed more than 800 million active users, with more people flocking to the platform during this current pandemic.

It is currently the 16th most popular social media app in Nigeria. And for a short while in April, it was the 8th overall most popular Android app,(overtaking Instagram by two places) and the third most popular social media app on Google Play (while Instagram was at 4th place),a statistics by Sensor Tower revealed.

In April, a viral video of the United States’ lawmakers Committee on Foreign Investment (CFIUS) called for an investigation into the use of the app as it affects US national security, accusing the platform of sharing their user data with the government circulated across social media; causing strained distress.

Critics have accused the app of being a potential spying threat with lawmakers mandating that top officials in the US government delete the app.

Recently, President of the United States of America, Donald Trump threatened to ban the app in his country for security reasons except China hands over the control of the app to an American company, preferably, Microsoft on or before September 15, 2020.

Meanwhile, Microsoft said it appreciates the importance of addressing the President’s concerns as “it is committed to acquiring TikTok subject to a complete security review and providing proper economic benefits to the United States, including the United States Treasury”,a statement read.

The software company added that it plans to “move quickly to pursue discussions with TikTok’s parent company, ByteDance, in a matter of weeks.”

The current range under discussion is rather broad, between US$15 billion and US$30 billlion, Financial Times reported.

TikTok officials however declined to comment on the reports of the forced sales, saying “we are confident in the long-term success of TikTok”, AFP reported.

“We are not political, we do not accept political advertising and have no agenda — our only objective is to remain a vibrant, dynamic platform for everyone to enjoy,” TikTok CEO, Kevin Mayer said in post.

-Nigerians React to Tiktok possible ban-

Nigerians however have made a mockery of the ban should the federal government make a similar move to ban Tiktok or other social media apps for fears that the apps could be a tool for chinese intelligence or heightened security issues, buttressing on the gigantic debt the nation owes China.

In Nigeria, the app is dominated by youths and celebrities including Don Jazzy, Genevieve Nnaji, Omoni Oboli, Kunle Remi among many others as comedians, dancers and singers from Instagram and YouTube are promised higher visibility and more followers, QuartzAfrica reported.

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