Ghana police threaten social media blackout during polls

Ghanaian Police Inspector General John Kudalor on May 26, 2016, told reporters in the capital Accra that police were considering blocking Facebook, Twitter and all other social media during general elections scheduled to be held in December 7, according to media reports.

Kudalor said his proposition followed concerns that social media could be used as a tool for misinformation, especially from politicians and their agents, to pose a danger to the nation’s security during the polls, the reports said.

Kudalor cited Uganda as an example of a country that had similarly blocked social media during February 2016 general elections, and during President Yoweri Museveni’s May inauguration to a fifth term in office.

“The world is now a global village and we have to compare with best practices… I think there is nothing that can stop anybody from going that way if it’s necessary,” Kudalor said in a radio interview with Accra’s Class FM on May 27, according to news reports.

Journalists, academics, and press freedom groups condemned Kudalor’s statements and promised to protest any social media blackout during the elections, according to news reports.