According to reports, the senate has withdrawn the controversial anti-social bill. The bill which was aimed at restricting freedom of expression in the country was sponsored by Bala Ibn Na’Allah, an APC lawmaker from Kebbi state.

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The upper chamber announced the decision at plenary on Tuesday. the announcement was made after David Umar, chairman of the senate committee on human rights and legal matters presented his committee’s report.

Umar, an All Progressives Congress (APC) senator from Niger state, said his committee recommended the withdrawal of the bill based on the strong opposition to it across the country.

On December 2, the bill seeking to curb frivolous petitions, false allegations and statements in the social media passed second reading.

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“Where any person in order to circumvent this law makes any allegation and or publishes any statement, petition in any paper, radio, or any medium of whatever description, with malicious intent to discredit or set the public against any person or group of persons, institutions of government, he shall be guilty of an offence and upon conviction, shall be liable to an imprisonment term of two years or a fine of N4m,” the bill states.

“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 N2m or both fine and imprisonment.”

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