Former military president, General Ibrahim Babangida, has kicked against the controversial Hate Speech Bill and the Protection from Internet Falsehoods and Manipulation Bill that are currently before the senate.
Speaking in his Minna Uphill residence when he played host to the National President of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Christopher Isiguzo the former president slammed the sponsor of the Hate Speech Bill describing the bill as ‘eye service’.
“I am surprised that this bill has resurfaced. There is no basis for this now. We are developing; we should be allowed to develop. If we make mistakes people can be cautioned. If somebody goes off you have the right to call him to say, ‘no, we don’t want this.’
“Unless people are able to express themselves, those in government or in authority will not know what is happening in the country” Babangida said.
“If somebody makes hate speech, put him in the gallows and not shoot him. It is crude and out of tune with the 21st century reality. It could have happened, may be some 300 years ago, but not now” he said.
The former president assured that he will reach out to people in position of authority to ensure the bill does not see the light of the day.