A bill to introduce a Federal Government Agency to check hate speech has been proposed by the Senate.
The bill was sponsored by the Deputy Senate Whip, Sabi Abdullahi, has passed its first reading on the floor of the house on Tuesday.
The bill is tagged National Commission for the Prohibition of Hate Speech (Estb., etc) Bill 2019.
A similar bill sponsored by Abdullahi in the 8th Senate prescribed among others, death by hanging for anyone found guilty of the offence.
The bill noted that it is a crime for “A person who uses, publishes, presents, produces, plays, provides, distributes and/or directs the performance of any material, written and/or visual, which is threatening, abusive or insulting or involves the use of threatening, abusive or insulting words or behaviour, commits an offence, if such person intends thereby to stir up ethnic hatred, or having regard to all the circumstances, ethnic hatred is likely to be stirred up against any person or person from such an ethnic group in Nigeria.”
“A person subjects another to harassment on the basis of ethnicity for the purposes of this section where, on ethnic grounds, he unjustifiably engages in a conduct which has the purpose or effect of (a) violating that other person’s dignity or (b) creating an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment for the person subjected to the harassment.
“Conduct shall be regarded as having the effect specified in subsection (1) (a) or (b) of this section if, having regard to all the circumstances, including in particular the perception of that other person, it should reasonably be considered as having that effect.”