Lai: No Country More liberal Than Nigeria In Granting Media Access To Information

Lai Mohammed, minister of information and culture, says no other country is as liberal as Nigeria in granting the media access to information, TheCable reports.

Speaking on Thursday at the ongoing 41st United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) general conference in Paris, Mohammed said fake news and disinformation had reached an alarming rate globally.

The minister said the advent of new media without regulation had aggravated fake news because social media platforms have become the medium of choice for “fake news agents”.

He called on UNESCO to use its global platform to join in the fight against the spread of fake news.

“UNESCO needs to help governments and the public by placing emphasis on the fight against fake news as much as it could,” he said.

“In addition to the roles of enhancing access to information and protection of journalists, UNESCO should proffer ways to handle fake news.

“The challenge is how to handle the twin evil of fake news and disinformation which have the capacity to cause unrest and destroy the essence of society.Advertisement

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“Nigeria is completely different from how it is being perceived from outside.

“We are yet to see any country that is more liberal than Nigeria in granting access to information by the media, even among the developed countries.

“For 10 years, I was a spokesperson for the opposition and there was never a time I was incarcerated.

“At the moment, we have an extremely tolerant government to the extent that it is the government that is at the mercy of the media in Nigeria.”

He also said there are at least “145 online publications” devoted to “harassing” the Nigerian government and using the platforms as tools to destabilise the country.


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