Hate Speech Law Would Only Make Nigerians Greater Victims of the System

Nigeria’s proposed Hate Speech Bill, which passed the first reading on the floor of the Senate last week, is both an ill-advised move that endangers the survival of democracy and a frivolous adventure to set up a needless agency.

This is the second time the bill is surfacing after it was brought to the National Assembly in 2018. This time, though, it was presented by the Deputy Chief Whip of the Senate, Abdullahi Sabi, under the title, ‘National Commission for the Prohibition of Hate Speeches.’ If passed, the bill would only empower a new agency to prosecute offenders with sentences that may include execution. If such a law is promulgated, it would severely limit the freedom of speech and empower state officers to victimise innocent Nigerians who question them.

The Muhammadu Buhari administration’s infringement on freedom of expression is well-documented.

Journalists, for instance, are having tough times entertaining their rights as several of them have been detained by law enforcement agents since 2015.

To read more, check full article on Sahara Reporters.