Law to regulate social media underway - Senate committee

Law to regulate social media underway - Senate committee

- A law to regulate activities on social media is underway, according to the Nigerian Senate

- The Senate said it is important to regulate the use of social media because many Nigerians are misusing it

- Some individuals are said to be using social media to bring down those perceived to be their political enemies

The National Assembly has warned that a law to regulate activities on social media is underway in Nigeria.

The chairman of the Senate committee on information, communication and technology and cybercrime, AbdulFatai Buhari, while speaking at the 2018 Cyber-security Conference in Abuja on Tuesday, June 26, disclosed this.

Daily Trust reports that Senator Buhari said it is important to regulate the use of social media "because many Nigerians are misusing it."

He said if the social media is left unregulated, some of activities on various platform are capable of setting the country on fire, especially as the country approaches national election.

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Buhari said: “We have got experts to advise us and we have presented a bill to the senate. The bill has passed the first reading and it has been listed for the second reading.’’

Decrying the prolific spread of false claims through social media platforms, Senator Buhari said some individual aim at bringing down those perceived to be their political enemies.

He urged Nigerian youths to use their ICT talent to develop the country’s economy rather than attacking fellow citizens.

Also speaking, the minister of communications, Adebayo Shittu, said his ministry would work with the Office of National Security Adviser and the National Assembly to reinforce or build international programmes to regulate adverse state behaviour.

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Shittu said: "And we will continue to partner with NASS and ONSA to impose sanctions on those that undermine our interests and global security on the cyberspace.

"We will continue to partner with ONSA to build capacity to benefit from the internet, to secure it, and to engage with international rule-making. The cyber ecosystem has been weaponised and manipulated to devastating effect to undermine democratic processes, influence voting in elections and whip up tension and divisions between and among societal groups."

Meanwhile, previously reported that in December 2016, the Nigerian Senate made clarification on the social media gag bill that caused an uproar among ,anu Nigerians.

The bill which was sponsored by Bala Na’allah of the Kogi south All Progressive Congress came under intense criticism.

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The bill which sort to approve a significant clampdown on freedom of speech and a deliberate target at critics of federal lawmakers and the National Assembly.

However, the Nigerian Senate said members of the public, including those for or against the anti-frivolity bill or parts of the bill will have the opportunity to shape its final outcome.

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