The Federal Government on Friday said it has increased the fine for hate speech from N500,000 to N5 million in the amended National Broadcasting Code to deter people who are willingly violating the provision to destabilise the country.
Recall that the minister in 2019 announced the approval of President Muhammadu Buhari for the increase of the fine which was later stipulated in the amended Broadcasting Code.
“What motivated the amendment was that when the fine was N500,000 we saw the provision being violated at will because the amount was very easy to pay,” he said.
The minister explained that some desperate people, who know that their broadcast content contains hate speech, will insist that the broadcast stations should air it while they bear the cost of the fine.
The minister said that hate speech is not new but the social media and its wildfire capacity to spread information made it to be more problematic.
He, therefore, reiterated the resolve of the government to regulate social media without stifling the freedom of speech.