, 7 tweets, 6 min read Read on Twitter
#FreeExpression is a foundational value in a democratic society because it makes choice possible between competing visions of how to organize society. It also makes it possible for citizens to convey their views to leaders, hold inform one another & hold govt to account
So, #FreeExpression is worth standing up for & defending. It also means those charged with regulating it have a high duty to do their job with a high sense of responsibility & due regard to the underlying constitutional & civic value in free expression
For a long time, the way in which #Nigeria's broadcasting regulator, the NBC, undertakes its work has been open to question. Some of the queries it issues to broadcasters leave it open to charges of partisanship & clearly show no regard for constitutional values
This NBC query to @AIT_Online dated 22 May 2019, constitutes the NBC into a Court with jurisdiction over the protection of judicial integrity, notwithstanding that the Commission admits that the kinds of violations it alleges can be remedied by concerned judicial authorities
This kind of over-eagerness led the NBC into this mess of peremptory & flawed shutdown of @AIT_Online. There is nothing in the powers of the NBC that enables it to shut down a broadcaster without hearing or to purport to do so indefinitely. That's just plain, old #AbuseOfPower
The issue today may be freedom of expression but there is a pattern of regulatory abuse in #Nigeria under the present administration, be it in telecoms with @MTNNG; securities wth @Oando_PLC; now with @AIT_Online. Yet we're wondering why investments are drying up?
@MTNNG @Oando_PLC @AIT_Online The crts have saved NBC's blushes & lifted #AITBan tonight. But there's a huge fight to defend #FreeExpression in #Nigeria. It'll rage deeper. @KakaakiSocial has started something good for broadcast content. @MrFixNigeria, plz don't stop smiling on set!
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