By Mustapha Usman, Kano
The Centre for Information Technology And Development, CITAD, has called for the enactment of law against hate speech in Nigeria.
The call was made Monday by the programme officer of the NGO, Isa Garba, at a press conference in Kano.
According to Mr Garba, lack of specific law was the reason for the prevalence of hate speeches among Nigerians.
“The lack of any specific law on hate speech in the country leads to a situation whereby the hate speakers use their identity and plain language in making their statements without the use of coded language as the experience of other countries has indicated,” Mr Garba said.
CITAD, an IT-based NGO, also condemned Pastor Johnson Suleiman for inciting statement against Fulani tribe over the Southern Kaduna crisis.
The group said Mr Suleiman’s remarks were unbecoming of his status, just as they were against the teachings of Christianity.
Mr Garba called on religious leaders to stop using hate speech as a tool of expressing their grievances, political or social misunderstanding with others.
He also revealed that religion has topped the CITAD’s January hate speech monitoring report with 444 statements, adding that ethnicity got 347, issue of Biafra had 18, while farmers/herders crisis had 11 statements.
He expressed concern over the ubiquitous nature of hate speech among Nigerians, calling on all an sundry to rise up against the ugly trend in order to achieve lasting peace in the polity.