The Federal Government says it will not go back on its decision to regulate social media.
The Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, made this announcement on Thursday during a courtesy call made by the Guild of Corporate Online Publishers in Abuja.
"Let me say, straight on, that the intense debate that has been generated by our announcement is a welcome development.
"The fear of stifling free speech or muzzling the media is totally unfounded. We have no such plan. As we speak, people are on the social media criticizing the administration. We have no problem with that.
“But our concern has to do with the abuse of the social media by those who are bent on spreading fake news and hate speech, and the dangers inherent in that for our national peace and unity. No responsible government will sit by and allow fake news and hate speech to dominate its media space because of the capacity of this menace to exploit our national fault lines to set us against each other and trigger a national conflagration,” Lai Mohammed said.
Citizens of Nigeria have called on the Federal Government to revoke the new act of sentencing social media users to jail for their posts on social media but the presidency has reaffirmed that the new regulation on social media users stands.
Any insult or false news purported against the presidency will be seen as treasonable offence and it attracts punishment.