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Online Safety Bill will not hinder freedom of expression: Raj

May 1, 2018 5:18 am

The Fiji Human Rights and Anti-Discrimination Commission believes the proposed Online Safety Bill will not violate Fijian’s rights to freedom of expression.

Presenting a submission to the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Justice, law and Human Rights this afternoon, Director Ashwin Raj said the bill will instead provide a safe environment particularly for those who are vulnerable.

Raj says many Fijians are worried that the proposed bill will limit their posting abilities on social media platforms, however, the Director disagrees.

He adds some individuals have also submitted to the Committee claiming that the bill will limit their democratic descent.

“What is democratic about posting somebody’s nude image on the social media and making a mickey out of it. What is democratic about posting images of people that have died a terrible death in a fire, an accident and you take a limp or an arm and you make fun of it. What is so democratic about these actions?”

Raj says the proposed Online Safety bill seeks to promote online safety through the establishment of the Online Safety Commission.

Keeping in mind the scope and speed of social media, Raj says we all have to prevent attacks on human dignity regardless of race, religion, sexual orientation and reputation.