Dr. Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami, Minister of Communication and Digital Economy
Dr. Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami, Minister of Communication and Digital Economy

Pantami: Internet Code to Avoid Tech Dictatorship

TECH DIGEST- According to Prof. Isa Pantami, Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, the government developed the Internet Code of Practice to stop large digital businesses from assuming a dictatorial role and growing to be more powerful than the government.

The Minister made this statement at the first-ever Nigerian summit on content moderation and online safety, which was held in Abuja and was organized by API under the theme “The Challenge for Content Moderation and the Opportunity to Improve Online Safety in Nigeria.”

He argued that a democratic republic is not merely a type of government but also a government that requires protection and upkeep through vigilance and, occasionally, force. Pantami added that there is a “strange power dominating humans” and compared the current big tech executives to Kings, Emperors, and Military dictators.

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Kashifu Inuwa, the Director-General of the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), who was the Minister’s representative at the event, said:

In the Federal Republic of Nigeria, we shouldn’t allow anyone have unaccountable power over others.

“Today looking at the social media incidence before the US election, indicated that Big Tech has more power than the Government. Users are compelled to obey the Big Tech rules because of the restrictions and sanctions in its usage. For example, if you use Twitter there is a limit of the words you can tweet.”

He emphasized that in a democratic setting citizens should have representatives elected by people to write rules rather than a few. According to him “this causes challenges such as the recruitment system being gender biased, or the recognition system being racist, and so on.”

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