Nigeria Policies Affecting Disinformation

From ADTAC Disinformation Inventory

Disinformation Environment

Disinformation has become a security issue as stories exacerbate ethnic and religious tensions.[1] Political parties have also worked to disseminate disinformation which targets their opponents ahead of elections.[2]

Actions and Initiatives

News media outlets have started a group called "crosscheck online" which checks for disinformation online.[3]


The 1990 Criminal Code act makes it an offense to publish “any statement, rumour or report which is likely to cause fear and alarm to the public or to disturb the public peace, knowing or having reason to believe that such statement, rumour or report is false.”[4]

Nigeria has a proposed bill: Protection from Internet Falsehoods and Manipulation and Other Related Matters Bill (2019). Under the bill it would be a criminal offense to state something while knowing or suspecting that it is a "false statement of fact”, it also criminalizes making or using bots to spread false statements.[5]

The 2015 Cybercrimes (Prohibition, Prevention, etc) Act makes it illegal to publish a message online when an individual is aware the statement “to be false, for the purpose of causing annoyance, inconvenience, danger, obstruction, insult, injury, criminal intimidation, enmity, hatred, ill will or needless anxiety to another or causes such a message to be sent"[6] The ECOWAS Court has declared that part of the law violates the right to freedom of expression.[7]

See more:

National Policies Affecting Disinformation