The President of Sierra Leone TikTokers, Juliet Konya Sesay, has expressed her views on the ban of TikTok in the United States.

Known as “Juju-Jeks”, Konya spoke to Umaru Fofana, the BBC Correspondent in Sierra Leone, and described the Chinese social media app as both fun and a source of income.

Konya defended her statement that TikTok has therapeutic benefits, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic when it can alleviate boredom and uplift one’s mood.

She added that watching or creating TikTok videos can change one’s mood to something positive.

Konya also mentioned that she charges clients for advertising on her TikTok platform and is a brand ambassador and social media influencer for several companies that bring in significant income for her.

In response to the challenges TikTok is facing in the Western world, especially in the US, Konya questioned the wisdom of banning the app, citing the mental health benefits it provides.

She also speculated that the pushback against the app may be due to it not being an American app and that it would not face such challenges if it were.

Konya confirmed that although many people in Sierra Leone initially referred to TikTok users as idle, today, many are using the app.

Meanwhile, privacy and security researchers who have scrutinized TikTok’s app have found that it is not much different from other social networks in terms of the data it collects or how it communicates with company servers. While the app collects a lot of personally revealing information, there is no evidence to suggest that it is inherently malicious or spyware.