***Says New bill to regulate the social media poses a serious danger to freedom of speech and expression.
By Henry Umoru
Executive Director African Centre for Peace and Development, Senator Shehu Sani has advised the Senators against being used by the Executive to emasculate the freedom of expression through the introduction of a bill that will regulate the use of social media in Nigeria and the bill for the Establishment of National Commission for the Prohibition of Hate Speeches.
Senator Sani who represented Kaduna Central in the 8th Senate first on the platform of the All Progressives Congress, APC and the Peoples Redemption Party, PRP, warned that the parliament must not aid or abet the Executive desire to destroy freedom of expression.
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In a statement yesterday, Senator Sani said that the new bill to regulate the social media poses a very serious danger to freedom of speech and expression, just as he warned that any law aimed at limiting the rights and freedoms of citizens to express their views is aimed at building what he termed, a tower of tyranny.
Senator Shehu Sani said, “The Bill on the regulation of social media poses a serious threat and danger to freedom of speech and expression.
“The quest to regulate social media is a grand plan to silence critics and dissenting voices. Combatting hate speech is a smokescreen to annihilating free speech.
“Any law aimed at limiting the rights and freedoms of citizens to express their views is aimed at building a tower of tyranny.
“It’s ironic a Government that came to power on the promise of protecting the fundamental rights of Nigerians is now reneging and sliding towards totalitarianism. Silencing dissent endangers democracy.
“The President as once a victim of abuse of power must be conscious of his place in history and legacies on human rights and the rule of law.
“Disobedience to court orders demonizes a country and criminalizes a Government.
“Nigeria’s Democracy is threatened by the authoritarian tendencies of the people in power.
“Sowore and all those still held against a valid court order for their release should be freed.
“There is a cloud of fear over our country and the moral flag of our democracy is lowered to half staff. There is the urgency to defend our freedom and democracy against those standing against it.”