#HateSpeechBill: Nigerians react to arrest of Micheal Itok over alleged Facebook post against governor

Nigerians have taken to the social media to raise concerns over the arrest of a bank official, Micheal Itok, who was remanded in prison for allegedly publishing “damaging and annoying” articles against a state governor by the State Security Service (SSS).

The 21-year-old Mr Itok, it was gathered, works with a microfinance bank in Uyo, as a marketer.

He was arraigned yesterday (Tuesday) before a magistrate court in Uyo and accused of writing numerous articles against the person of the Akwa Ibom State governor, Udom Emmanuel, and other staff of the state government house.

ALSO READ: Hate speech bill: Nigeria moving towards dictatorship ― Afe Babalola

The charge against the bank official reads, “That you, Mr Michael Itok and another now at large, sometimes in October, 2019 at 1000 Units Housing Estate, Idu Uruan, Uruan Local Government Area, within the Uyo Magisterial District did constitute yourself into a nuisance by publishing damaging and annoying articles on your Facebook page with the aim of harassing, blackmailing and bringing to disrepute His Excellency Deacon Udom Gabriel Emmanuel and other staff of the Akwa Ibom State Government House, and thereby commits and offence punishable under Section 6(1) (f) of the Akwa Ibom State Internal Security and Enforcement Law, 2009.”

However, Nigerians are protesting against the arrest of the bank official, especially on the micro-blogging site, Twitter, noting that the arrest of Itok negates democratic principles and an attempt to gag free speech.

Below are the tweets:

 

 

https://twitter.com/iykimo/status/1199600939545636865?

 

 

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