NGO seeks legislation against hate speeches

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A Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO), Christian Women for Excellence and Empowerment in Nigerian Society (CWEENS), has urged Federal and state governments to pass laws against hate speeches in the country.

The Prayer Coordinator of the group, Pastor Gloria Emmanuel, made public the NGO’s position in Jos on Saturday at a media interactive session organised in conjunction with Voice of Truth Initiative (VOTI), another NGO.

Emmanuel said that the laws should prescribe stiff penalties for defaulters to serve as deterrent to others.

She also advocated for more platforms where Muslims and Christians would learn the tenets of both religions “in a calm and friendly atmosphere.’’

”Going by recent happenings, we believe that such laws are very crucial if we are to check against inciting speeches and pronouncements that could ignite violence,” he said.

The NGO leader said that the laws should also prescribe punishment for people who participate in mob actions leading to the destruction of lives and property.

She cautioned against laws or practices that could encourage differences on the basis of sex, tribe, faith or political affiliations, pointing out that such situations usually create suspicion and tension among law abiding citizens.

The NGO recalled recent violent attacks on individuals in Kaduna and Kano and urged the security agencies to prosecute the culprits to send the signal that such actions were not acceptable to the society.

She, however, commended the swift response by the Kano and Kaduna State Governments which ensured the arrest of some suspects.

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