WhatsApp: The government of Zambia imposed restrictions on access to WhatsApp this Thursday (12), when the country is undergoing presidential and parliamentary elections, say users on Twitter. Several state-owned internet providers are not allowing access to the platform.
Internet monitoring organization Netblocks confirms the reports and adds that other social networks such as Facebook, Instagram, Messenger and Twitter have also been hit.
To get around the block, users in Zambia are using VPN services. However, it remains to be seen whether the government will force the internet to be completely shut down.
Documents circulated during the week claim that the African country’s authorities had threatened to shut down the internet if Zambians “did not use cyberspace correctly during this year’s elections.” The blockade is expected to take place by Sunday, when the counting of votes is expected to end, according to the revelation.
The Permanent Secretary for Information Services and Broadcasting, Amos Malupenga, denied the information, calling it ‘malicious’. However, the secretary stated that the government would not tolerate the abuse of the internet and that there would be no hesitation in taking appropriate measures.