The Federal Government has been urged not to gag the Nigerian Press or muzzle the social media in the country.
In a Press statement in Lagos yesterday, Chief Adesunbo Onitiri, renowned socio-political activist and critic, stressed that this does not urgur well and healthy for the survival of a democratic nation.
He condemned with all vehemence the recent fine imposed on some media houses by the Nigerian Broadcasting corporation NBC.
The fine he pointed out, is inimical to dissemination of free information to the Nigerian populace.
“Nigerians are entitled to free access to unfettered information and no government should distort or hamper the access. This is a fundamental human rights of Nigerians as guaranteed under our constitution.
Chief Onitiri pointed out that the social media is already regulated under our extant laws. Any attempt to further regulate it will be seen as government trying to gag the people. The Nigerian people already know their rights and no government can close their mouths.
According to the social critic, any attempt to deny the people free expression may lead to unpleasant consequences. “We are aware that the government is jittery at the aftermath of the ENDSARS PEACEFUL PROTEST.
“It behoves on the government to genuinely address the demands of our youths. The youths have spoken loud and clear. We cannot afford not to harken to their demands which are purely GOOD GOVERNANCE, JUSTICE AND EQUALITY.
Chief Onitiri berated the APC government, describing it as the worst regime that foisted nepotism, and tribalism on the nation.
“We are now in a new Nigeria. We should do away with the old style of governance and embrace the true Federalism,” he said.
Chief Onitiri observed with dismay that President Muhammadu Buhari has not visited Lagos and some states affected by the wanton destruction of life and the property by hoodlums.
“We call on the federal government to help Lagos state and indeed the states mostly affected by this destruction to rebuild their states .
“Also the government should help private businesses to start all over again. Besides, the federal government should probe independently the killings and maiming of harmless youths at the Lekki toll gate by the Nigerian Army and any culprits should face justice.
“Nigeria is not a Banana Republic where soldiers should open live ammunition on defenceless protesters . It is absurd and totally unacceptable in a civilised world.
“This country belongs to us all and we will not fold our arms and let a group of greedy politicians who forced themselves on the majority bastardise it for us, he stated.
Commenting on the recent meeting of the 19 Northern state governors and their leaders, Chief Onitiri stressed that our leader all over the country should say and do what will unite us all the time.
“No region should claim superiority or supremacy over others in the federation. Henceforth we should see ourselves as equals in the federating units.
“This democracy has come to stay and we will defend it with all our powers. Nigeria is greater than anyone and we shall continue to defend its unity,” Onitiri added.