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Social media regulation: the next epidemic to hit Nigeria is fake news, Lai Mohammed says

The Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed has said there is a need for Nigeria to regulate the social media space to regulate the peddling of fake news online, he stated that “the next pandemic to hit Nigeria will be fake news.” The Minister, speaking with the House of Representatives committee on information, national orientation, ethics and values during the 2021 budget defence presentation said the next war that will be fought in the country and across the globe may be fought through social media.

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He stated that even though the government was not seeking to shut down the social media space in the country, he advised that there is a need for policies to be put in place that regulates the social media and check fake news and information, “we need a national policy on social media regulation he said.” He said “the biggest challenge facing Nigeria today is fake news and misinformation” hence, an entire National Council on information meeting in his to that issue after which we launched a national campaign against fake news in July 2018.

Lai Mohammed warned that the next war will be fought without a shot being fired but with the use of fake news, we are sitting on a keg of gun powder he added, regarding the spread of fake news. Concerning the EndSARS protest, he added that that war was fought on social media with smartphones and data “the last #EndSARS fought was fought own social media, they mobilised and submitted news using the phones.” He added that the younger generation doesn’t bother to listen to conventional radio and television anymore.

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