Nigerians Hit Out At Aisha Buhari For Backing Social Media Bill

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Harsh comments have continued to trail the support given to the social media bill by the Wife of the President, Mrs. Aisha Buhari in her latest salvo.

President Muhammadu Buhari’s wife had on Friday, urged the federal government to regulate social media like the Chinese government is doing to its 1.3 billion citizens, censoring every comment within its social media space including contents from the mainstream media operating in the country.

“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,” she said.

Aisha, also used the occasion to call on state governors and ministers to deliver democratic dividends to citizens at the event, saying people cannot afford potable water in the country again.

However, at the event Nigeria’s Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo and the Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Muhammadu Sa’ad Abubakar III disagreed with the calls for social media regulation, stating that there were enough laws to deal with the abuse of the platforms.

The controversial bill titled: ‘Protection from internet falsehoods and manipulation and other related matters bill 2019,’ was sponsored by Senator Muhammad Sani Musa and had scaled through the second reading at the Nigerian Senate.

Nigerians might have hailed the Wife of the President on a number of occasions over her comments adjudged to be fiery and honest in the past. Her comments had exposed her husband’s administration to criticisms during the run-up to the last general elections. But this time, on Twitter, a lot of Tweets coming from Nigerians are not sparring her for backing the Social Media Bill, seen by many as an attempt to suppress citizens’ freedom of expression as guarantee by the Nigerian constitution.

Here are some of the reactions to Aisha’s comments on Twitter:

 

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'Dotun Akintomide's journalism works intersect business, environment, politics and developmental issues. Among a number of local and international publications, his work has appeared in the New York Times. He's a winner of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) Award. Currently, the Online Editor at The New Diplomat, Akintomide has produced reports that uniquely spoke to Nigeria's experience on Climate Change issues. When Akintomide is not writing, volunteering or working on a media project, you can find him seeing beautiful sites like the sandy beaches that bedecked the Lagos coastline.

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