A bill seeking to regulate journalism practice in Nigeria has drawn strong scepticism and condemnation from prominent media rights groups, the Premium Times reported.

The Senate pushed the controversial Nigerian Press Council Amendment Bill through a second reading earlier this year, eliciting widespread outrage from media practitioners who said it was an attempt to revive some of the relics of dictatorship that freedom lovers thought modernisation and democracy had consigned to the dustbin of history.

Following a recent meeting senior executives of the Newspaper Proprietors’ Association of Nigeria, Nigeria Guild of Editors, Nigerian Union of Journalists and Broadcasting Organisation of Nigeria declared the bill “draconian, primitive and unconstitutional.

The groups, members of the Nigerian Press Organisation, further argued that the bill should never even have been submitted for deliberation by the senate in the wake of a lawsuit against the Nigerian Press Council by former military dictator Ibrahim Babangida which aimed to curb an independent and vigorous media.

- African News Agency (ANA)