The Centre for Information Technology and Development (CITAD) has applauded the House of Representatives for its recent directive instructing the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to suspend its mandate that requires commercial banks to collect the social media handles of their customers.
According to a statement issued to newsmen by Ali Sabo, CITAD’s Digital Rights Officer, said the directive was purportedly aimed at enhancing Customer Due Diligence (CDD) regulations.
He explained that in response to the CBN’s directive issued last month, which instructed commercial banks to collect and store customers’ social media handles, CITAD, along with other individuals, organizations, and digital rights activists, expressed concerns about the potential infringement on data subjects’ privacy.
“They criticized the directive for breaching individuals’ personal privacy and undermining the objectives of the recently enacted Data Protection Act, championed by President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, who seeks to safeguard citizens’ personal data” Sabo revealed.
Sabo noted that CITAD, as a dedicated organization committed to protecting the digital rights of citizens, considered the directive an abuse of citizens’ rights online.
In response, the Centre promptly released a statement urging all well-meaning Nigerians, the National Assembly, and the President to condemn the act and demand its withdrawal.
He said the resolution by the National Assembly to suspend the directive has been widely welcomed by Nigerians, and CITAD commends their swift action.
Furthermore Sabo asserted, CITAD calls upon all Nigerians, Civil Society Organizations, and the media to continue raising their voices against this draconian directive. They emphasize the importance of sustaining the National Assembly’s stance and urging the President to add his support to the collective voice of Nigerians.
CITAD urges the Central Bank of Nigeria to heed the voice of reason and comply with the directive issued by the National Assembly.