Horndiplomat-On the 10th of November, in a press conference by the National Electoral Commission (NEC) was declared the closure of Social Media starting from the voting day till the official result of the election is out.
The news of the Social Media shutdown was circulating the last few days as a rumor, but NEC confirmed the news officially when the Election Day is due to only 3 days.
This temporary shutdown of the Social Media is coming after an election campaign that saw the most engagement in Social Media from the people of Somaliland. Facebook, in particular, was a serious platform of campaigning, political engagement, and discussions.
The spread of Fake News, its implications and discussions were a matter of concern lately as it’s impossible to control the content being shared online and most of the times on Social Media. Several conferences have been held on the topic over the past several months in Somaliland. NEC said that Fake News is one of the biggest underlying issues that caused this decision.
#SomalilandVotes :Social Networks will be shutting down on the voting day, 13th Nov, until the #Somaliland's Presidential Elections results comes out to avoid Fake news and the spread of misinformation about the results/elections- @NEC2017 declares
— Mahamad Abdi Duale (@MohamadDuale) November 10, 2017
At the Press Conference, NEC said that they had a meeting with the Internet Providing Companies in Somaliland and discussed how this decision is to be carried out with them.
The temporary shutdown, which will be limited to only Social Media and will not include other sites of the internet, will begin in the evening, 6 PM, on the Election Day, 13th Of November until the election results are officially out. Therefore, as many people and companies were worried their work will not be affected by this decision.
NEC concluded its Press Conference that they hope that the people of Somaliland will agree and comply with their decision as it serves for the best purpose in this Election time.