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Paradigm Initiative, EiE Decry Suspension of Mohammed Wanigi by Niger Govt

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Paradigm Initiative and Enough is Enough (EiE) Nigeria have condemned in strong terms the suspension of Baba Mohammed Wanigi, a school teacher with the Agaie Local Government in Niger State, in reaction to Wanigi’s alleged criticism of government officials including President Muhammad Buhari.

 

The two civil society organisations made this known in a jointly signed press statement released today.

According to Tope Ogundipe, Paradigm Initiative Director of Programs, “The Local Education Authority of the Agaie Local Government Council, Niger state, Nigeria issued a suspension letter to one of its employees, Baba Mohammed Wanigi, a teacher in service of the Niger State government.

 

According to the letter, the suspension was based on the teacher’s ‘active participation in politics and hate speech especially on the social media’.

 

This is all because Mr Wanigi exercised his freedom of speech in criticising government and government officials on social media.

“It is obvious that this act by the LEA is not only morally reprehensible but patently unconstitutional.

 

“The Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria in Section 39 provides that every person shall be entitled to freedom of expression, including freedom to hold opinions and to receive and impart ideas and information without interference.

 

“This is a most basic right for citizens in a democracy,” Ogundipe said.

Every Nigerian is a key stakeholder in matters concerning Nigeria and no group or body may constitute itself as an authority to preclude its members from ‘Active participation in politics’.

 

It makes no sense whatsoever, neither does it matter that a meeting was held with the 169 Head Teachers of Agaie Local Government Education Authority to decide against active participation in politics.

 

The Local Government Education Authority does not have the authority to overrule the constitution or limit constitutionally-guaranteed rights.

According to Adeboro Odunlami, a digital rights advocate with Paradigm Initiative, said, “The general definition of Hate Speech is any statement or speech that attacks a group or category of people and incites violence or prejudicial attack against them.

 

“A controversial statement is not hate speech. A dissenting opinion is not hate speech.

 

“An uncomfortable perspective is not hate speech. An unpopular stance is not hate speech.

 

“It is therefore wrong for the government to take disciplinary action against a person for no reason other than the expression of his opinion about the state of affairs and conduct of the administration.”

Also speaking on the matter, Adeolu Adekola, Program Manager of EiE Nigeria said, “As Nigeria moves towards the 2019 elections, we are concerned about politicians using this excuse and guise of hate speech to repress citizens and the opposition.

 

“Several attempts to control free speech especially on social media has been resisted and will continue to be challenged.

“We recall the Frivolous Petition bill (Prohibition, etc) Bill 2015 sponsored by Senator Bala Ibn Na’Allah had a clause that sought to regulate the use of social media and short message service (SMS) in the country.

 

“This was resisted and in May 2016, the bill was withdrawn and thrown out.

 

“Also, section 24 of the Cybercrime Act, 2015 has loopholes that are being exploited to repress freedom of expression over the Nigerian cyberspace and civil liberties,” Adeolu said.

 

EiE Nigeria, Paradigm Initiative and Media Rights Agenda (MRA) are in court to challenge section 24 of the act.

“We therefore call on the Local Government to retract the suspension letter and decision and reinstate unconditionally Baba Mohammed Wanigi back into service.

 

“We also demand that an apology should be made to him for the gross infringement of his fundamental right to freedom of expression,” he added

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NBC Shuts Down Ekiti Broadcasting Stations Indefinitely

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National Broadcasting Commission (NBC), has ordered the immediate shut down of the Ekiti state broadcasting service for infractions of the Nigeria broadcasting Code and the Electoral Act.

 

The Commission took this decision after unauthorized declaration of the governorship election results by Mr. Ayodele Fayose, state Governor on the Ekiti State Broadcasting stations.

 

In addition, the Governor went on air to make malicious and unsubstantiated claims against the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), the Nigerian Police and the Department of Security Services.

 

The station will remain shut down till further notice.

 

The Commission had on Tuesday 5th June queried the station’s, Mr. Lere Olayinka, acting director general who is doubling as the spokesman for the PDP campaign organisation in breach of Section 5.2.18 of the Nigeria Broadcasting Code in letters to the Station and the State Government. Both letters were ignored by the recipients.

 

 

Maimuna Jimada, head, Public Affairs, said that the Ekiti State Broadcasting Service on Wednesday 11th July, 2018 was found in breach of sections 5.2.7 and 5.2.8 of the Code for which it was reprimanded and fined N500,000 by the Commission.

 

Jimada, quoted Mal. Is’haq Modibbo Kawu, director general,  as saying that he “wishes to re-emphasize that all broadcasters must adhere strictly to the ethics of the profession in conducting all programmes on their stations in respect to the Nigeria Broadcasting Code, the National Broadcasting Act CAP N11 Laws of the Federation, 2004 and the Electoral Act.

 

For the avoidance of doubt, Kawu hereby draws the attention of all, to the following sections of the Nigeria Broadcasting Code:

 

3.1.2 which states that:

Materials likely to incite or encourage to the commission of a crime or    lead to public disorder shall not be broadcast

 

5.2.15 which states that:

A broadcaster shall broadcast election results or declaration of the winner only as announced by the authorized electoral officer for the election.

 

Broadcasters are hereby also reminded that the Social Media is not an official source for release of election results.

 

The NBC wishes to reiterate that broadcasting stations must ensure proper gate keeping and professionalism in all programmes transmitted on their stations as the Commission would impose severe sanctions for any breach of the Broadcasting Code.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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MTN Foundation Extends Emergency Ward Intervention Project to Hospitals in the South East

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(L-R) Ijeoma Olisa, Accountant, Coscharis Medical, Regina Ewendu, Head of Operations, Coscharis Medical, Enyinnaya Nwokeocha, Project Coordinator Health, MTN Foundation, Izunna Anegbu, Monitoring and Evaluation Officer, MTN Foundation and Geraldine Udo, Head of Research and Development, Coscharis Medical at the inspection recently.

In continuation of its commitment to improve the quality of health of our people especially during period of emergency, MTN Foundation will be providing medical equipment and supplies to the emergency wards of six hospitals in Anambra, Ebonyi and Imo States under its Emergency Ward Intervention Project.

 

The hospitals include; Federal Teaching Hospital Abakaliki (FETHA 1), Ebonyi, Chukwuemeka Odimegwu Ojukwu University Teaching Hospital, Awka,  Anambra and Imo State University Teaching Hospital (IMSUTH), Owerri.

Under this project, MTN Foundation provides medical equipment and consumables ranging from stethoscopes, suction machines, fracture immobilizers, laryngoscopes; digital patient monitors etc. to hospitals across Nigeria.

 

In Phase 1 of the project, MTN Foundation provided these medical items to emergency wards of hospitals in Adamawa, Borno and Yobe states.

 

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Kwesé TV, 9mobile Enter Distribution Agreement

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Kwesé TV, Nigeria’s newest satellite pay-TV network, and leading telecommunication company in innovation, 9mobile have signed a distribution agreement for the sale of Kwesé TV decoders through 9mobile Experience Centres across Nigeria.

With this strategic partnership, prospective Kwesé TV customers can easily walk into any participating 9mobile stores and purchase a Kwesé kit comprising a dish, decoder, including one-month free subscription, and installation for N10,960.

This partnership which will be rolled out through a phased approach has been launched in key 9mobile Experience Centres situated at The Palms Shopping Mall, Ikeja City Mall, Adeola Odeku Street on Victoria Island, Mushin, Surulere and Festac Town; all in Lagos.

Kwesé TV offers 70+ premium channels for family viewing with an extensive programming line-up including wholesome children’s programs, live sports, lifestyle shows, movies, series and so much more! Kwesé’s appeal is not only its world-class content but its innovative industry-first ‘pay as you watch’ payment model which gives customers the choice between purchasing 3-day, 7-day and 30-day subscription packages to its full entertainment and sports bouquet.

The partnership with 9mobile will also see 9mobile subscribers access the Kwesé iflix app through exclusive video data bundles for the Kwesé iflix 1-day, 3-day, 7-day and 30-day VIP passes.

Speaking about the partnership, General Manager, Kwesé TV Nigeria, Elizabeth Amkpa, said: “This partnership extends our distribution network and makes our products accessible to even more Nigerian consumers.

We are currently operating in select 9mobile Experience Centres in Lagos, and we will soon be available in other major cities across the country in partnership with 9mobile.”

Also commenting, Vice President, Marketing, 9mobile, Adebisi Idowu, said, “We are excited to be working with Nigeria’s newest pay-TV provider to offer premium TV and video content to our customers.

This newest partnership is a further demonstration of our commitment to continuously deliver innovative services that enable Nigerians to enjoy more, across all our brand touchpoints.”

Adebisi added that 9mobile will continue to forge partnerships and build bridges that enrich the lives of its teeming customers and enable them to enjoy best in class quality of service (QoS) at all times. “9mobile is determined to continue meeting the passion point of Nigerians, especially, customers on the network; and Kwesé TV offers yet another major platform to do so”, he enthused.

9mobile has been acknowledged as Nigeria’s most innovative and customer-friendly telecommunication company, and through its revolutionary fastest data package,

Moreblaze, it has consistently offered its tech-savvy customers functional innovations thereby setting the market pace for competitive offerings in meeting the clients’ wants and needs.

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