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Ethiopia Parliament Passes Fake News, Hate Speech Law

Ethiopia Prime Minister, Abiy Ahmed Ali

The Ethiopian Parliament, House of Peoples’ Representatives (HoPR) on Thursday passed a controversial law aimed at sanctioning fate news and curbing hate speech.

The nation prime minister’s cabinet approved the bill three months ago after which it was forwarded to the house.

Majority vote 23 against and 2 abstentions passed the bill titled,”Hate Speech and Misinformation Law”.

“It is deemed necessary to enact the law because the nation cannot address problems arising from hate speeches and fake news with existing laws,” a November 2019 statement issued from the council of Ethiopia’s ministers said.

Critics said the law could be used to suppress dissent ahead of a general election scheduled to hold later this year.

The coming election will be the first poll in Ethiopia since Nobel Peace Prize winner and Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed took office in 2018.

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