The Nigerian Senate has today passed the Digital Rights and Freedom Bill, following in the footsteps of the Nigerian House of Representatives which passed the Bill on December 19, 2018.
In a statement following the passage of the Bill at the Senate, Pan-African digital rights organization, Paradigm Initiative commended the two legislative houses for passing the important bill.
The Bill, a product of civil society efforts led by Paradigm Initiative beginning at the 2014 Internet Freedom Forum in Abuja, “provides for the protection of human rights online, to protect Internet users in Nigeria from infringement of their fundamental freedoms and to guarantee application of human rights for users of digital platforms and the digital media.”
In 2016, Hon Chukwuemeka Ujam sponsored the Bill at the House of Representatives where the bill underwent rigorous legislative process before its eventual passage last December. The Bill was first tabled before the Senate for concurrence on January 16 2018, and was finally passed today.
Speaking on the importance of the bill, Paradigm Initiative’s Digital Rights Program Manager, Boye Adegoke said, “By the passage of this Bill, the legislative arm of government has shown a commitment to the development of digital rights in Nigeria.”
He added, “I am most excited about the provisions in this Bill regarding freedom of expression online. The bill will ensure that citizens can freely express their opinions online without…