OderPaperToday – A media advocacy group, Media Rights Agenda (MRA) has urged President Muhammdu Buhari to sign the Digital Rights and Freedom Bill into Law.

The group opined that the assent will be a major legacy of Buhari’s presidency which will benefit millions of Nigerians for years to come.

In a press statement signed by its Programme Director, Mr. Ayode Longe, in Lagos on Thursday, the MRA stated that by assenting to the bill, which has been transmitted to him for signature by the National Assembly, President Buhari would gain support on internet freedom for Nigerians.

The MRA gave credit to the National assembly for the prompt consideration and passage of the bill and described the proposed law as “a strong piece of legislation that conforms strongly to global norms and standards and will effectively protect the rights of Nigerians on the Internet and in the digital environment.

“The bill provides a comprehensive framework for the advancement, protection and enjoyment of human rights on the internet and in the digital environment, consistent with Nigeria’s regional and international obligations under various international human rights instruments, some of which Nigeria has led in bringing into being by co-sponsoring”.

The MRA reminded the President that “Nigeria played a leading role on the global stage in 2012 when it led in co-sponsoring the landmark Resolution on the Promotion, Protection and Enjoyment of Human Rights on the Internet at the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva, alongside Sweden, the United States, Brazil, Turkey and Tunisia, wherein it was affirmed that “the same rights that people have offline must also be protected online, in particular freedom of expression, which is applicable regardless of frontiers and through any media of one’s choice.”

It further highlighted that the resolution brought Nigeria great respect and acclaim from around the world, urging the President to sign the bill “in keeping with the groundbreaking direction and guidance which this Resolution provided to the global community on human rights online.”

Reporting by Sunday Oguche


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