Cyber Regulation: NADIR Backs NITDA’s Code of Practice

Cyber Regulation: NADIR Backs NITDA’s Code of Practice

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As the country prepares for the forth coming 2023 general elections, a period characterized by information disorder, when illegal contents have a field day, the Network of Advocates for Digital Reporting (NADIR) has expressed full support for National Information Technology Development agency’s (NITDA) “code of Practice” to regulate some existing problems on internet usage in the country.

NADIR Coordinator, Dahiru Mohammed Lawal, noted that globally, rules and regulations exist to moderate indiscretion so as to avert recipes for dissensions into anarchic existence.

He emphasized that the digital media is a double-edged sword that can either be used as a tool to forge or as a weapon to destroy, which must be highlighted.

“An unregistered Online space remains a recipe for civil unrest and the need for an instrumental that will ensure that our unity in diversity is not exploited for pecuniary gains, while guaranteeing freedom of speech and expression as enshrined in the Nigerian Constitution is incumbent upon all citizens with the interest and love of our nation at heart.”

According to him, incitements, ethnocentric behaviors that increase tension along ethnic biases, interreligious incitements and blasphemy, as well as secessionist tendencies that threaten security and lead to violence, including wanton attacks thrive fatally in an unregistered media space.

“While NITDA clarified that the code of ethics is a draft, subject to inputs, we wish to urge the stakeholders to take advantage and intervene appropriately, on order to have a mutually accepted code of regulations without recourse to the fear of tackling freedom of speech.”

Among others, Lawal stressed that the move will not only aide the strength of press freedom but will also ensure sanity and integrity of information dignity, which is fast waning, ostensibly due to the activities of influence operations.

To this end, Lawal urged NITDA to work assiduously in building confidence and trust around what it is doing by continuously involving all stakeholders, adding that Nigerians should not be gulled, we must all keep our eyes on the ball, it’s about information disorder, illegal content and online safety for everyone.

He further noted that, with the digital space already contributing about 18% to the National GDP, compelling big techs to abide by the laws of the country and pay the requisite tax will amount to an increased revenue which will contribute to the growth of the nation’s economy.

Such regulations, Lawal, also believe will promote more local contents which in turn translates into massive job creation while ensuring the breeding of more corporate and law-abiding citizens who are mindful of our collective sensitivities as a people united in diversity.


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