- A former member of the Peoples Democratic Party and activist, Deji Adeyanju, had earlier called for a regulation on the use of social media in Nigeria
- Adeyanju had proposed a restriction of Nigerians' use of the social media
- According to Adeyanju, government's Department State Services (DSS) and the Nigerian Police should have verified Twitter handles
On Tuesday, November 5, 2019, the Nigerian Senate introduced a bill titled Protection from Internet Falsehood and Manipulations Bill 2019.
The bill sponsored by Senator Mohammed Sani Musa was met by outrage from many internet users including civil society activists across the country.
The activists in their protest warned that the social media space cannot be gaged on restricted.
However, a letter seen by Legit.ng shows that a former member of the opposition party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and convener of the Concerned Nigerians, Deji Adeyanu, who have also condemned the recent move by the Senate had in the past called for a restriction on the use of social media.
Adeyanju, in a letter to the federal government, proposed for a restriction of Nigerians' use of the social media.
In the letter dated July 7, 2014, from No 10 Koda Link, Ademola Adetokumbo Crescent in Wuse II district of Abuja and signed by the activist himself, Adeyanju said as a concerned citizen, he has been watching the "dangerous trend of new media (social media) in Nigeria especially Twitter."
He warned that Nigerians have been freely using the social media space over the years and this has, in turn, become a threat to the country's national security and unity.
Warning that the absence of law led to various campaigns like public incitement, treasonable felony and even demoralising and maligning Nigeria's security agencies.
Citing America's Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), Adeyanju also said the government's Department State Services (DSS) and the Nigerian Police should have verified Twitter handles.
According to him, such verified handles will serve as platforms for the dissemination of useful information to the general public.
Adeyanju said: "Since Twitter delivers Instant Messaging, millions of Nigerians on the platform can give useful information" to the agencies without fear."
He said the twitter handles will encourage users to volunteer information through tweets or DMs for confidentiality.
"Your presence will instantly bring sanity to the social media platform because everyone who ha been reckless in information sharing will become careful since there is now an invincible eye now on the platform reading all their tweets," Adeyanju said.
He continued: "You can also use this medium to gather data and information covertly, your handle should also once in a while use cautionary warning to any author media house of inflammatory write-ups or agitations and those who compromise national security."
According to the activist, such Twitter handles should also be used to enlighten the public on activities, responsibilities, and expectations of the institutions across its zones or commands in Nigeria.
Giving reasons for such needs, Adeyanju said many young Nigerians no longer watch television or read newspapers but instead they do so online through Twitter, Facebook, and the likes.
He further called for the opening of Facebook pages which would also be immediately verified for the use of the same reasons by the Federal Government.
Meanwhile, Legit.ng previously reported that some activists were at the National Assembly on Wednesday, November 27, to protest the passage of the social media bill by lawmakers of the Nigerian Senate.
The activists in their scores said the new social media bill is another draconian decree to gag Nigerians Some Nigerians.
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Nigerians storm National Assembly to protest social media bill | Legit TV