By Gbenga Salau
The President, Muslim Students’ Society of Nigeria (MSSN), Lagos State Area Unit, Miftaudeen Thanni on Tuesday implored the Federal Government to reverse the recently reviewed Broadcast regulation code by National Broadcasting Corporation (NBC).
Thanni, speaking at a briefing to announce its annual conference, said in any society, hate speech should be a crime, but what constitutes hate speech must be clearly defined.
“It is inappropriate for the government to consider criticisms as hate speech. Nigerians are angry and unpleased with the recent application of the reviewed Nigerian Broadcasting Code and it would only be appropriate for the government to reverse it. Freedom of speech is fundamental. Denying citizens such freedom defeats the essence of government.
“Though some Nigerians may be wayward in their speeches, the government should be conscious that what the citizens say is dependent on their programmes and activities.”
Thanni also noted that the state of insecurity in the country is still worrisome, saying as a student-based organisation, it is concerned about the increasing cases of ritual killing and rape.
“We appeal to the government to always remember that the security of lives and properties is their primary responsibility.”
He asked Lagos State government to extend street lights to more areas to curb nefarious activities of criminals. “We also condemn the recurring habit of extorting
Lagosians by security officers. This is dangerous for our security architecture and we appeal to security chiefs to urgently address this.”
On education, Thanni stated that the poor funding of education in the country is having a negative effect on output across all levels.
“The government must understand that massive investment in education is a guarantee for achievements in economic development and the well-being of their citizens.
Also, we appeal to the private sector and philanthropists to complement public spending.
“Nigeria, therefore, needs to learn correctly from other nations that have got it right in their education sector and be consistent with its educational policies.