By Luminous Jannamike
Abuja – It was a dramatic scene at the National Assembly when members of a civil society group, Centre For Liberty, stormed the Legislative Complex to urge Senators to send the Social Media and Hate Speech Bills, pending before it, to the grave.
The group, which staged a 10-minute mock plenary session, dramatized the expected rejection of the Bills by the Red Chamber, with a moral undertone that doing so will truly represent the wishes of Nigerians regarding the two proposed laws.
In addition to the display, the name of each Senator in the 9th Assembly was mentioned and followed by the chant: “Kill the Social Media and Hate Speech Bills!” in a call-and-response manner.
Addressing journalists after the protest, the CSO’s Coordinator, Digital Freedom Advocacy, Mr. Raphael Adebayo stressed that the goal of the demonstration was to entreat the Senate to withdraw the two controversial Bills.
He said, “We wish to remind and untreated the Senate to abide by the noble wish of the Nigerian people and ‘kill’ these Bills without further delay.
“Retaining these Bills in the records of the Senate with the hope of oxygenating it, will amount to an aberration and a disservice to the people of Nigeria.
“We, therefore, urge all members of the 9th National Assembly to immediately commit to the verdict of Nigerians during the Public Hearing which held on the said Bills on March 9th, 2020 and reject them without further delay.”