- The Nigerian media has cautioned the National Assembly against enacting laws affecting practice of journalism in the country, expressing fear that a bill might pose an impediment to free flow of information.
The Bill seeks to provide for the repeal of the Nigerian Press Council Act 1992 and establish what will be known as the Nigerian Press and Practice of Journalism Council.
The former Minister of Information, Prince Tony Momoh, warned that the National Assembly should be careful not to enact a law that is contrary to the provisions of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999. He said the constitution recognises the role of the press and no law made by the legislature could override the constitution.
During the public hearings held at the National Assembly, which touched on media freedom and operating conditions, the Bill was viewed as controversial and has faced stringent condemnations for its proposals deemed to suppress press freedom in the country.
This bill becomes the second major controversial media bill proposition after the Freedom of Information Bill.
According to local media reports, some of the lawmakers, who admitted the proposed bill was flawed, spent time convincing media representatives that the committee and the government had no "ulterior motives" with the bill.
The bill is conceptualised to better handle complaints emanating from the public about the conduct of journalists and the media houses in their professional capacity, or complaints emanating from the press about the conduct of persons, organisations or institutions towards the press, the Bill motivators are reported to have said.
afrol News - It is called "financial inclusion", and it is a key government policy in Rwanda. The goal is that, by 2020, 90 percent of the population is to have and actively use bank accounts. And in only four years, financial inclusion has doubled in Rwanda.
afrol News - The UN's humanitarian agencies now warn about a devastating famine in Sudan and especially in South Sudan, where the situation is said to be "imploding". Relief officials are appealing to donors to urgently fund life-saving activities in the two countries.
afrol News - Fear is spreading all over West Africa after the health ministry in Guinea confirmed the first Ebola outbreak in this part of Africa. According to official numbers, at least 86 are infected and 59 are dead as a result of this very contagious disease.
afrol News - It is already a crime being homosexual in Ethiopia, but parliament is now making sure the anti-gay laws will be applied in practical life. No pardoning of gays will be allowed in future, but activist fear this only is a signal of further repression being prepared.
afrol News / Africa Renewal - Ethiopia's ambitious plan to build a US$ 4.2 billion dam in the Benishangul-Gumuz region, 40 km from its border with Sudan, is expected to provide 6,000 megawatts of electricity, enough for its population plus some excess it can sell to neighbouring countries.