A number of the Government Websites have been closed down, tonight, paralyzing online services delivery. Most websites accessed tonight returned ‘error 403- The Website app is stopped’. “The Web app you have attempted to reach is currently stopped and does not accept any requests. Please try to reload the page or visit it again soon,” read the error message on the screen.

Reports indicate that the websites have been closed down by Microsoft’s web hosting company, Azure; which maintains them. The closure has been informed by the government’s failure to pay hosting fees to Azure.

Some of the government’s website on shutdown tonight are those of: The Labour Ministry, Ministry of Energy, Lands Ministry, Mining & Petroleum and Immigration. A spot check on the Ministry of Education, though, showed that the Website is on and running. See Screen Shots, below: