A Twitter tourism slogan promoting the Maldives as offering the ‘sunny side of life’ has been hijacked by anti-government campaigners.
Alleged human rights abuses are being highlighted after the opposition failed to secure a boycott of the luxury destination.
Government spokesman Masood Imad said the opposition Maldivian Democratic Party was sabotaging the tourism ministry’s Twitter campaign after an unsuccessful bid to discourage holidaymakers to visit the Indian Ocean archipelago.
“They hijacked the Twitter campaign after they failed miserably to discourage tourists from visiting us,” he told the AFP news agency.
It is unclear who started using the hashtag sunny-side-of-life (#sunnysideoflife) to send out anti-government tweets.
“Young people of Maldives who have seen the violence have resorted to this clever use of Twitter,” MDP spokesman Hamid Abdul Ghafoor told AFP.
The government last month paid $250,000 for an international campaign that included sponsoring the weather report on BBC with the catch line: “Sunny side of life.”