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Saraki Defends Social Media Censorship Bill, Says People Must Be Held Responsible For Their Action

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Bukola SarakiIn spite of criticism trailing the ongoing bill by the Senate to censor social media in the country, Senate President Bukola Saraki on Thursday vowed that the Red Chamber would not back down from passing the proposed law.

Saraki, who noted that social media was a major ingredient for the growth of democracy in the country, however, said the Senate could no longer ignore the fact that it was being abused by some elements.

Speaking yesterday when Senator Dino Melaye (APC/Kogi West) raised the issue under matters of urgent importance, during the day’s plenary, the Senate president lamented activities of some social media platforms, which he said, had published numerous materials to undermine the integrity of the red chamber.

While faulting the backlash the proposed social media censorship bill has generated, Senate President Saraki insisted that senators cannot be blackmailed to drop the bill.

Saraki, while acknowledging the excesses of some of the social media users, however, stressed the existence of freedom of speech in the nation’s law book.

Even as he advised that the social media should be fair and accurate in their reportage, Saraki said the Senate cannot let “a few bad eggs” taint the image of the social media.

“People must be held responsible for their action. I believe what has been raised is important”, Saraki said.

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Egwuatu ONYEJELEM

    December 4, 2015 at 12:58 pm

    PROPOSED SOCIAL MEDIA LAW: Government Already Singing the Song of Own Failure?

    After using the social media to rise to the heights, the government of the day now wants to introduce a law that would undermine the freedom of expression of the mass of Nigerians. Is this a sign of incapacity or something? Should this be a thing of major concern to the country or could the government have been more relevant to society? No one knows what exactly they want to do.

    It seems the government aims at blocking every channel that would promote its critics as it proposes a two-year jail term or an option of NGN2,000,000.00 about ($10,000) for ‘would-be violators’. Whether they want to partly criminalise the use of social media or to block access to same, it is hoped that the Senate would thread with caution on this. It is not just about the social media; the use of the conventional media to abuse others should equally be addressed. By-the-way, what about their abuse of public offices and the use of official powers against others? What penalty do they get? What happens if somebody has said the evil facts about you: the elite, public office holders, politicians and businessmen on the social media? Would that still amount to abuse?

    In any case, let’s hope that whatever law the government proposes and consequently enacts does not interfere with the ingenuity of Nigerian sharp brains in IT, as well as R&D activities in the country. Howbeit, one thing I am sure of is that Nigerian IT gurus will overwhelm the government in any move to stop their progression.

    The bill, which has already passed second reading in the senate seems to be worrisome and dangerous. Perhaps the government does not know that the social media is like an easy and open access to knowledge, despite its negative implications. If the law aims at inhibiting the negative implications of social media that would be fine, but if it in any way undermines innovative ideas of users then it may eventually backfire. Therefore, government MUST be cautious not to adopt the communist ideology which it seems to be following because Nigeria is-and-remains a democracy as currently constituted.

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Politics

Umahi Sacks Tertiary Institution’s Boards Headed By Ex-Minister, Ambassador

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Umahi Sacks Tertiary Institution’s Boards Headed By Ex-Minister, Ambassador

Dave Umahi

Governor of Ebonyi State, Dave Umahi who recently defected to the All Progressives Congress, on Tuesday sacked sixteen Technical Assistants.

The development was disclosed in a statement released by Umahi through the Secretary to the State Government, Dr. Kenneth Ugbala.

He also announced the dissolution of governing boards of the state’s two tertiary education institutions.

Also Read: Gov. Umahi Sacks Political Appointees From Ohaukwu LGA

The boards dissolved are the Ebonyi State University Governing Council and the Ebonyi State College of Education, Ikwo Governing Boards.

The two boards are headed by Ambassador Franklin Ogbuewu and a former Minister of State for Health, Fidelis Nwankwo.

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Saraki Leads PDP’s Nati youonal Reconciliation Panel

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 Saraki Leads PDP’s National Reconciliation Panel

Bukola Saraki

Former Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki has been appointed by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) as the chairman of its National Reconciliation Committee.

The committee made up of five other members is expected to work to resolve grievances and disagreements among party members across the country.

Also Read: Saraki Reacts To Kidnap, Killing Of Worshippers In Zamfara Mosque

This development was confirmed in a tweet late on Monday night by the party’s National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan.

Other members of the committee are former Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Senator Pius Ayim; former Governors Liyel Imoke (Cross River), Ibrahim Dankwambo (Gombe), and Ibrahim Shema (Katsina); as well as former House Minority Leader, Mulikat Akande.

 

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Fashola: If We Keep Our Promises, APC Will Retain Power In 2023

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    Fashola: If We Keep Our Promises, APC Will Retain Power In 2023Babatunde Fashola

Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola has expressed optimism that Nigerians will still vote the All Progressives Congress (APC) back to power in 2023.

Fashola, however, added that the only thing that can make Nigerians not to vote for the APC is if the party fails to fulfill its campaign promises to them.

The Minister made this remark while speaking with journalists on Monday in Abuja.

Also Read: APC Governors’ Visit To Jonathan Is An Endorsement Of Our Party – PDP

He noted that even if the promises are not 100% fulfilled but the citizens see signs of commitment and progress, other parties should forget about displacing APC in 2023.

The former Lagos State Governor added that opposition parties are not doing better than the APC, hence should not expect Nigerians to vote for them come 2023.

He said: “Some governors have joined us, from where we think we could not get voters before. To retain power in 2023, certainly if we keep our promises, people will vote for us. It is that simple, that is politics,” the former Lagos governor said.

“If you do what you say you will do, even if you don’t do hundred percent and they see that you are making progress, they will even want you to finish what you started.”

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