No To Social Media Bill Or Your Names Will Be On International-No-Fly List, Nigerians In Diaspora Tell Senators
Diaspora Nigeria Nationals Network (DNNN), with membership all over the world and its headquarters in New York, has called on Senate President Bukola Saraki to slam the brakes on the so-called SocialMediaBill, or risk members of the Upper House finding they are unable to travel in any direction whatsoever.
At an emergency meeting of the group on Friday, its members declared that if Mr. Saraki failed to take this measure, they would begin a process of including all Senators who vote for it, as well as their families and relevant associates, on the international-no-fly list, “as they could constitute danger to the freedoms and lives of Nigerians including those beyond Nigeria’s borders whose views they find offensive.”
They said in a press statement they would also request meetings with the US Secretaries of State Mr. John Kerry and Homeland Security Jeh Johnson, to present their petition and initiate the above sanctioning process against the targeted law makers, their families and relevant associates.
Key officials of the group from all over the world who signed the statement were: Dr. Daniel Udia, Executive Director; Dr (Mrs) Brigit Edevor, Executive Secretary; Mr. David Azinge, Regional Director, Europe; Mr. Uzoma Njoku, Regional Director, Asia; Prof. Eddie Oparaoji, Regional Director, The Americas; and Dr. Seyi Leggon, Regional Director, Africa and the Middle East.
DNNN rejected the bill as being reminiscent of the obnoxious Decree 4, which was promulgated during the 18 month dictatorship of the current president, Muhammadu Buhari.
The “idiotic bill,” DNNN noted, is the work of Senator Ibn Na’Allah (Kebbi) of Buhari’s All Progressives Congress, but enjoys the support of a vocal group of the Senate’s membership. The draft has however attracted worldwide outrage.
Among others, it provides as follow: “Where any person through text message, tweets, WhatsApp or through any social media post any abusive statement knowing same to be false with intent to set the public against any person and group of persons, an institution of government or such other bodies established by law shall be guilty of an offence and upon conviction, shall be liable to an imprisonment for two years or a fine of N2,000,000.00 or both fine and imprisonment.”
The group said it held its emergency meeting, which featured a lengthy deliberation and consultation with their attorneys, in recognition of the “injurious and terror-inducing impact the bill might have on Nigerian citizens, particularly Diaspora Nigerians.”
“Enough of the foolishness!” they declared.