According to Kenya’s NCIC, Facebook failed to address hate speech and incitement on the platform before the nation’s general elections.
Kenya’s ICT minister stated on Monday that the country has no plans to take down Facebook, which Meta owns, after the national cohesion watchdog gave the platform seven days to abide by laws against hate speech or risk suspension.
The National Cohesion and Integration Commission (NCIC) charged Facebook on Friday with violating Kenya’s laws and constitution for failing to take action against hate speech and incitement on the website before the country’s elections on August 9.
According to Joe Mucheru, the information, communication, and technology minister, “We do not have a plan to shut down any of these platforms.” We value press freedom, whether it is in (conventional) or social media.
He repeated the interior minister Fred Matiangi, who over the weekend criticized the NCIC for making rash judgments and assured that the platform would not be shut down in his remarks.
“Given that they lack the authority to censor anyone, they (NCIC) ought to have had extensive consultations. No one is licensed by them, “A loteru stated.
When it issued its request, the NCIC stated that it was conferring with the Kenyan agency that oversees the industry, the Communication Authority of Kenya and that if Facebook did not comply, it would be recommended that operations be suspended.
A business spokeswoman told Reuters that Meta has taken “extensive steps” to screen out hate speech and provocative material and is stepping up those efforts before the election.
Mucheru concurred, noting that the site had removed 37,000 postings containing hate speech throughout the campaign.
Supporters of the two front-runners for the presidency, longtime opposition figure Raila Odinga and vice president William Ruto, have used social media platforms to promote their candidates, urge people to back them, and blame the other side for a variety of wrongdoings.
In previous elections, some of Kenya’s 45 tribes have engaged in violence against one another. Still, Mucheru claimed that this election is different and that the nation is now experiencing peace and tranquility despite the increased political activity.