April 21, 2018

CommsWeek, CBT develop app to fight hate speech

Communication Week Media Limited, publishers of Nigeria CommunicationsWeek, and Core Business Technologies Limited (CBT) have developed mobile phone application to enable the public to report hate speech in a bid to curb the spread of extremism and sectarianism.

Hate speech is speech which attacks a person or group on the basis of attributes such as race, religion, ethnic origin, sexual orientation, disability, or gender.

According to Ken Nwogbo, a Nigerian newspaper columnist, ICT Journalist and founder, Communication Week Media Limited, the App aims primarily to tackle the impunity of hate crimes.

“Hate speech is clear and present evil, the many wars across the world were caused by the crimes of hate speech, that was why we partnered with CBT, arguably one of Nigeria’s solution-oriented, dynamic and indigenous Information Technology and Solutions service provider to develop this App” Nwogbo added.

Compatible with both Android and iOS operating systems, the App called “Pana” tackles hate speech by establishing monitoring and evaluation units in the App.

Edward Essien, CEO of CBT, said “I do not support capital punishment for hate speech, that is why we developed the App to nip it in the bud. By sentencing hate speech offender to maximum penalty, the government is inadvertently promoting hate speech”

“By that, the government is promoting one section of the society against the other, the best thing to do it trace and trap such speech” he added.

The app enables citizens to report anonymously extremist speeches, banners or activities wherever they notice them. Users can send pictures, audio, video or a written message.

Such data and information received can be shared with police and other law-enforcement and regulatory authorities.

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