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Presidency distances itself from controversial Press Council Bill

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Femi Adesina, senior adviser to the president on media and publicity, has claimed the President Muhammadu Buhari “has nothing to do” with the plan to amend the Nigerian Press Council (NPC) act.

Adesina distanced the presidency from the bill while answering questions from state house correspondents after the weekly meeting of the federal executive council (FEC) in Abuja on Wednesday.

He said the proposed amendment is a federal government initiative, and as such, only the minister of information and culture, Lai Mohammed, can address it.

He said: “That is not strictly a presidency thing because the president has nothing to do with that. It’s a government thing and it’s the minister that can talk about it. So, thank you.”

The bill, which seeks to repeal and re-enact the NPC act, was considered at a public hearing organised by the house of representatives committee on information, national orientation, ethics and values.

Media stakeholders had subsequently kicked against the proposed amendment over some provisions they described as unconstitutional.

When asked to about the ECOWAS Court ruling against Nigeria for suspending the micro-blogging platform, Twitter, Adesina said, the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, is studying the ruling issued by the ECOWAS Court and would advise the federal government on the next step to take.

The Presidential Spokesperson stated: “The Attorney-General of the Federation is going to study that report and then he’ll advise government on the way forward. The committee set up by the President to engage with Twitter is actually holding a meeting about now, or it will hold a meeting this afternoon (Wednesday) towards engaging with Twitter.”

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