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After Buhari’s Denial, FG Rejects Sponsoring Social Media Bill

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The Federal Government has dismissed reports that it was behind the bills purportedly meant to gag the press and regulate social media.

TrackNews Online had earlier reported that President Muhammadu Buhari through his media aide, Femi Adesina, had denied sponsoring the controversial bill.

Recall that the Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, had during the week urged the House of Representatives to include regulation of Twitter in the National Broadcasting Commission Act.

The Minister made the call at the public hearing on a bill to amend the NBC Act organized by the House Committee on Information.

But speaking to newsmen in Lagos on Friday, the minister stated that the bill before the National Assembly was sponsored by a private individual.

“First, let me say how disappointed I am that those who have been berating me on these bills have been doing so on a false premise that the Federal Government had sponsored bills to stifle the press,” Lai Mohammed said.

”This is a classic case of misinformation because the Federal Government did not sponsor any bill to gag the press.

“It baffles me that those who rushed to the media to slam the government didn’t even try to verify the facts.”

He however said the National Assembly member who sponsored the bills had done nothing wrong.

“I insist that the bills were not sponsored by the Federal Government.

“I was invited, as the Minister of Information and Culture, to make my contributions, just like many other stakeholders at the public hearing.

“It was an opportunity for stakeholders to make their input into the bills.

”I attended and made my contributions,’’ he added.

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