The government of Nigeria has created an official account on Indian social networking platform Koo, its cofounder and CEO Apremya Radhakrishna said in a statement on Thursday.
The official account of Nigerian Government also plans to air a documentary on Koo on June 12 to commemorate Democracy Day.
“A very warm welcome to the official handle of the Government of Nigeria on @kooindia! Spreading wings beyond India now,” Radhakrishna said in a Tweet on June 10.
— Aprameya R (@aprameya) June 10, 2021
The development comes shortly after Koo announced that it will expand operations in the African nation after social networking platform Twitter was banned in Nigeria.
On June 4, Nigerian telecom operators suspended Twitter services after the platform deleted a remark where the Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari referred to the country’s past civil war in a warning about recent unrest. President’s tweets made a reference to the country’s 30-month civil war in 1967-1970, warning “those who wanted the government to fail” to desist from fomenting trouble.
However, on June 6 Buhari said a state-wide ban on Twitter which prompted international condemnation over the weekend was only a temporary measure in response to misinformation. Twitter has over 39 Mn users in Nigeria. International human rights groups and diplomatic missions of the EU, US, UK and Canada have issued statements condemning the suspension.
Founded in March 2020 by Aprameya Radhakrishna and Mayank Bidawatka, Koo was one of the winners of the Indian Government’s ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat App Innovation Challenge’ in August last year and has raised over $34 Mn funding so far.
A large section of Koo’s user base currently consists of supporters of the right-wing ruling party Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). Top ministers of the BJP government were among the first ones to publicly endorse Koo and create their accounts on the platform, as the very presence of a swadeshi microblogging platform aligns with their slogan of ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat’ or ‘Self-Reliant India’.
Koo founders Radhakrishna and Mayank Bidawatka also operate Vokal, a regional language Q&A platform. Koo enables access to information and entertainment to Indians in their own languages. Currently available in Hindi, Kannada, Tamil, Telugu, Bangla , Gujarati and English languages. Twitter is natively available in four languages Bengali, Hindi, Urdu besides English and other foreign languages.