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FG Moves To Regulate Social Media, Combat Fake news, Hate Speech

The Federal Government says it is working on how to inject sanity into the social media space which, according to it, is totally out of control today.

Addressing journalists in Abuja, Minister of Information and Culture Lai Mohammed said the social media at present constituted real danger to the unity of the country.

“What goes on social media is so ridiculous and we will contain it,” information minister Lai said.

He said since the government launched its reform of the broadcast industry, many Nigerians have reached out to it demanding that it also looked into sanitising the social media space.

“I can assure you that we are also working on how to inject sanity into the social media space which, today is totally out of control,” he stated.

The minister emphasised that contrary to insinuations, the government had no intention of muzzling the media or stifling free speech, saying the campaign was against fake news and hate speech.

He said only those engaged in disseminating fake news or hate speech needed to be worried because they would not be spared.

“We cannot allow fake news and hate speech to become free speech because these Siamese twins of evil are capable of inflicting untold damage on our democracy and are threatening our national unity.

They represent a clear and imminent danger to our survival as a nation,” Lai said.

He assured that the planned social media regulation would be in line with international best practices as obtainable in Singapore, the United Kingdom and other countries.

“No responsible government will sit by and allow fake news and hate speech to dominate its media space because of the capacity of this menace to exploit our national fault lines to set us against each other and trigger a national conflagration. That is why we will continue to evolve ways to tackle fake news and hate speech until we banish both,” he stated.
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