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9mobile Promotes Responsible Online Behaviour

9mobile Promotes Responsible Online Behaviour

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Summary : 9mobile has tasked Nigerians on the need to foster a safe online environment to commemorate the 2024 Stop Cyberbullying Day. The Telco, made the call, at its online session titled ‘Cyberbullying vs Free Speech: The Reality, The Difference, and Our Responsibility,’ which featured distinguished experts from the media, mental health, and legal sectors who provided insights on cyberbullying. The online session brought together voices from diverse fields to dissect the fine line between free speech and cyberbullying. Participants explored the reality of cyberbullying, its impact on individuals and communities, and the differences between harmful behaviour and exercising free speech. The expert panel included: Nikki Laoye, a talented musician, radio host and entrepreneur; Precious Richard-Okon, Plus-size Lifestyle and Dance Content creator; Alice Okoro, Manager, Legal Services for 9mobile and Amara Ruth Esomchi, Certified Health Worker and Therapist. Talented musician and radio host Nikki Laoye, said, while people are at liberty to make comments on social media, it is important to checkmate bullies on the internet, noting that, “I am a radio personality, musician, humanitarian among other things, and I relate with different people across board. This has opened me up to cyberbullying, but I have learnt how to handle these situations. I agree that people are free to express their opinions, but I know when to put a stop to insults and bullies when necessary”. Legal expert, Alice Okoro highlighted that the right to free speech and freedom of expression is often used as an excuse for cyberbullying. She said: “The Nigerian constitution grants us the right to talk freely, express our opinions, and disseminate information on the internet. However, there is no fundamental human right in the constitution that is absolute. This means that every right that is granted in the Constitution has limits, and free speech is limited in such a way that individuals are expected to express themselves without contravening any law or provision of the Constitution.” Okoro further explained that there is major legislation to curb cyberbullying and stalking captured in the Cyber Crimes Act of 2015, saying, this act seeks to prevent cyber-related offences such as cyberbullying, online harassment, and cyberstalking among others. Offenders who are guilty of these crimes can be sentenced to three years imprisonment, a fine of up to seven million naira, or both. Repeat offenders can be sentenced to a fine of up to N15million. Plus-size Lifestyle content creator and Senior business executive, Precious Richard-Okon, also shared her first-hand experience in the online space and tips on how to navigate effectively. Public relations lead at 9mobile, Chineze Amanfo, emphasised the company’s commitment to promoting responsible online behaviour and the pivotal role of telcos in this endeavour, stating that,, “At 9mobile, we recognize our responsibility to promote causes that shape the digital landscape to ensure it is safe and conducive for all users. We are dedicated to creating platforms encouraging positive engagement and providing users with the tools and knowledge to navigate the internet safely.” (LEADERSHIP)

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