While speaking at the Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs General Assembly and National Executive Council Meeting held at the National Mosque in Abuja, the president’s wife called for the regulation of social media.
The First Lady, Aisha Buhari has thrown her weight behind the ‘Protection from Internet Falsehood and Manipulation 2019’, a bill seeking to regulate Nigeria’s social media space.
Exemplifying her point with China, the first lady stated that with about 1.3 billion people, the Asian country had been able to regulate its social media, and she doesn’t see why Nigeria with only 180 million people cannot attempt to control its social media.
She said, “On this issue of social media, you cannot just sit in the comfort of your house and tweet that the Vice President has resigned. It is a serious issue. If China can control over 1.3 billion people on social media, I see no reason why Nigeria cannot attempt controlling only 180 million people.”
Since the social media bill passed second reading at the Senate, politicians, key opinion leaders, and the Nigerian populace have expressed that the bill be is a threat to Nigerians’ freedom of speech and the nation’s democracy.
If passed into law, the bill seeks to prevent falsehoods, manipulations, and counter the effects of such communications and transmission.