Posted by News Express | 29 October 2015 | 2,937 times
Speaker of the House of Representatives, Rt. Hon. Yakubu Dogara, has disclosed plans by the National Assembly to work towards the regulation of the online media in the country. He made the disclosure in a goodwill message delivered at the formal launch of the Guild of Corporate Online Publishers (GOCOP) in Lagos.
Dogara, who was represented by Hon. Abdulrazak Namdzi, acknowledged that online newspapers have been of immense benefit to lawmakers, as they have helped to bridge the gap between them and their constituencies. He said for lawmakers to reach their constituencies now is just a click away on the telephone or computer.
The Speaker also said the consciousness that there are online publications has gone a long way in checking corruption, adding: “People now know they are being watched. And since part of the 8th legislative agenda is to fight corruption and with the realisation that you cannot do it without the media, it is imperative for the House to work with online publishers.”
Dogara, however, lamented that online journalism has become an all-comers’ affair and is being misused by many. “We believe that there is need to regulate the online media, to separate the wheat from the chaff,” he said.
The House Speaker spoke of the need to take a second look at the controversial Cybercrime Act hurriedly passed by the 7th Assembly and under which several bloggers have been arrested and charged to court. He, however, assured that GOCOP would be carried along in doing so, along with other stakeholders. “We will sit down with experts and will also reach out to you to enable us have a very good law,” he said.
Dogara equally called on journalists to help educate Nigerians about the functions and roles of the legislative arm of government.
Among other distinguished guests at the occasion were the Special Adviser to President Muhammadu Buhari on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina; Chairman of Zinox Group, Leo Stan Ekeh; Director General of the Debt Management Office (DMO), Dr. Abraham Nwankwo; Chairman of the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related Offences Commission, Barrister Ekpo Nta (represented by Hon. Isa Ozi-Salami); Corps Marshal of the Federal Road Safety Corps, Boboye Oyeyemi (represented by Bisi Kazeem); Vice President, Corporrate Communications, Airtel Nigeria, Emeka Oparah; and Head of Communications, United Bank for Africa, Charles Aigbe.
•Photo shows Reps Speaker Dogara.
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