Through the ICT CS Joe Mucheru, the Kenyan government dismissed the recent National Cohesion and Integration Commission (NCIC) threats to shut down Meta’s Facebook over online hate speech on the app.
NCIC told facebook to tackle hate speech and incitement on the platform within seven days or be suspended.
This comes after the advocacy group Global witness accused Facebook of carrying out more than a dozen political advertisements that breached Kenya rules according to the NCIC.
NCIC Commissioner Danvas Makori said efforts by the commission to push peace messages have been futile yet hate speech has been dominant on the platform.
He said, We have been trying to push peace messages on Facebook but they’ve been suppressing them. We have been unable to fight hate speech online because Facebook has refused to allow us to publish these messages”
The commission says the inability to push for a peace message on the app has prompted them to push the suspension of its operations if no response is made.
While Meta has insisted on its intensifying efforts to tackle hate speech ahead of the election, there’re still noticeable loopholes in the processes which prompted NCIC to threaten to have them shut in 7 days.
Having this going on a few days before the elections have as well attracted an internet uproar with revellers linking the shutdown to election malpractices.
ICT cs Joes Mucheru took to Twitter to confirm that there will be no shutdowns during the election period.
He said, ” Media, including social media, will continue to enjoy press freedom in Kenya. Not clear what legal framework NCIC plans to use to suspend Facebook. Government is on record. We are not shutting down the internet.”