That’s right, the senate is suspending further legislative action on the Social Media Bill until 2020.
Punch reports that the suspension was made by the Senate Committee on Judiciary, Human Rights and Legal Matter, the 14-member panel expressing mixed feelings toward the bill that has received wide criticism from the populace.
“We have to be careful so as not to be on the wrong side of history,” a member of the committee shared. The member revealed that they have decided to consult “widely” before moving forward with the bill.
Stakeholders are being identified, the member also shared, and will be invited to air their opinions on the bill. Members of the public will also be invited.
We have agreed, tentatively, to fix the public hearing for January. We have to be careful so as not to be on the wrong side of history. We are already identifying the various stakeholders who have spoken on the issue as individuals, groups or institutions. We will send letters of invitations to them.
We will also do a media publication inviting members of the public to the public hearing with their written submissions so that we would capture all their views. We need to ensure that the media and the civil society groups who are in the forefront of the agitation against the bill, come around to defend their position.
It is when this is done that we will be able to convince Nigerians that we have done the right thing.