Nigerians on social media have massively opposed the new directive by the Central Bank of Nigeria, which imposes a new flat charge of N6.98k for customers using the Unstructured Supplementary Service Data (USSD) services, effective from Tuesday, March 16.
The Apex bank, in a joint statement with the Nigerian Communications Commission, said the new charge was part of the agreement reached when banks and telecommunication operators met on Monday to discuss the N42bn debt owed mobile operators by commercial banks.
Many who considered the development as outrageous have opined that the President Muhammadu Buhari government may infact be targeting the poor.
See reactions below:
The hashtag gained traction among aggrieved Nigerians who are decrying the inhumane treatment metted out to one Kaduna-based businessman, Alhaji Mahadi Shehu, who blew the whistle on the Masari-led government following a N52.6 billion fraud allegation and his revelations of ransoms paid to abductors.
In a Twitter post shared by Rights Activist Aisha Yesufu, Mr Shehu was said to have been siezed by security operatives despite battling ailing health, and taken to a Katsina Magistrate court where he was denied access to his attorney and family.
Video footages also showed Shehu in excruciating pain, calling out the Masari government for its brash response to a whistleblower especially one under a democracy.
Recall that the Masari government had filed a law suit against Shehu for alleged Cybercrime with claims that the documents he circulated while accusing the government of fraud, were forged.