The Federal government has asked the House of Representatives to amend the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) act to empower the agency to regulate social and online media.
The Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, made the request on Wednesday June 16 during a public hearing organized by the house committee on information, national orientation, ethics and values on a bill to amend the NBC act.
This comes days after suspending Twitter’s operation in Nigeria
Section two (b) of the NBC act states:
“(1) The Commission shall have [the] responsibility of: Receiving, processing and considering applications for the establishment, ownership or operation of radio and television stations including (i) cable television services, direct satellite broadcast and any other medium of broadcasting.”
The Minister requested that the commission be allowed to regulate the online media in addition to other channels of broadcasting.
“I want to add here specifically that internet broadcasting and all online media should be included in this because we have a responsibility to monitor contents, including Twitter.”Lai said
This comes days after NBC asked all social media platforms and online broadcasting service providers operating in Nigeria to apply for a broadcast licence.
Media stakeholders however kicked against the move and asked the house panel to make NBC more independent of the minister of information.