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Nigeria: Hate Speech, Social Media bills are in conflict with the Constitution - SAN

The two bills before the Senate is a sign that tyranny is building up in the country - Sani

SERAP Called on Senator Abdullahi to withdraw the bill, apologies to Nigerian

The Country is drifting to military-like dictatorship if the proposed hate speech bill is allowed - Most Rev. Anthony Obinna 

A senior Advocate of Nigeria, Chief Olanipekun, (SAN) has said "The Hate Speech and Social Media bills are in conflict with the Constitution. No amendment could heal them.

He said the bills must be withdrawn in public interest. What we need are laws to address our problems and cushion the effects of poverty and education etc."

“They should withdraw it outright. No amendment, no palliatives, no review, no further consideration, they should withdraw it. We will clap for them if they withdraw the bill for the fact that they have demonstrated that they are human.

Olanipekun made the statement at Ikere Ekiti, Ekiti State, shortly after the 23rd edition of the yearly Chief Wole Olanipekun Scholarship Scheme where he awarded scholarships to brilliant but indigent secondary school pupils in the community and university students across the state.

let me advise that the National Assembly be more productive. Let us stop chasing vanity, things that are not productive and things that are counter-productive. To me as a lawyer and as an elder, I want to say that this bill will be counter-productive. The bill will bring about bad blood and disunity even within the family."

A former senator , who represented the Kaduna Central at the Senate in the 8th National Assembly, Senator Senator Shehu Sani who has on many occasions made calls against the proposed bills stated during a summit organised by the House of Justice on Saturday in Kaduna as he argued that the two bills were inimical, dangerous and subversive to the nation’s democracy.

According to him, the two bills before the Senate is a sign that tyranny is building up in the country.

Sani, who noted that with what was happening in the country, it appeared blocks of tyranny were building up in Nigeria, added that there was a need to halt it.

He added that people in government were becoming intolerant of criticism, noting that that was dangerous for the country.

Sani, however, cautioned the current government against any attempt to deny Nigerians their right to freedom of expression.

Sani said, “Nowadays, people in government are becoming intolerant of criticism and there is an attempt to silence people from questioning power. And that is dangerous.

“My call to the National Assembly is to throw away the social media bill and the hate speech bill. The two bills are inimical and dangerous to democracy.

“The bills are threatening and will end up consuming our democracy if people have no right to express their opinion.”

Also The Socio-Economic Right Accountability Project (SERAP) called on Senator Aliyu Sabi Abdullahi to immediately drop the repressive Hate Speech Bill, and publicly apologise to Nigerians for proposing this UNLAWFUL bill, which is an affront to Nigerian constitution. Adding that  Even former dictator IBB rejects your bill.

 [email protected]
Dear Senator Aliyu Sabi Abdullahi, we are again calling on you to immediately drop the repressive Hate Speech Bill, and publicly apologise to Nigerians for proposing this UNLAWFUL bill, which is an affront to Nigerian constitution. Even former dictator IBB rejects your bill.

Meanwile, the Metropolitan Archbishop of Owerri Ecclesiastical Province, Most Rev. Anthony Obinna has also said that the country is gradually drifting to military-like dictatorship if the proposed hate speech bill before the National Assembly is allowed to succeed. 

The cleric who was delivering a homily yesterday, December 1, 2019 at the Maria Assumpta Cathedral made call that such anti peoples' bill must not be passed.


With additional reporting from Punch.

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