Myanmar’s Lower House have endorsed a motion seeking to establish an agency to monitor online racial hate and religious speeches and to curb the spread of disinformation on social media, The Irrawaddy reported on Thursday (Nov 9).
Transport and Communications Minister U Thant Sin Maung assured members of the Lower House that the monitoring will not infringe on the privacy or fundamental rights of citizens as guaranteed by the Constitution.
He said that everyone is duty-bound to use social media in a responsible manner, adding that the government itself cannot curb hate speeches.
Lawmaker of the National League of Democracy Daw Yin Min Hlaing who initiated the motion said that irresponsible use of the social media could disrupt law and order and corrupt morals – a view shared by the transport minister.
Military representative in the Lower House Maj Ne Win proposed registratioin of SIM cards and Facebook users as additional measures to deal with hate speeches
Facebook is the most popular social media platform in Myanmar with the number of users estimated at 14 million. The Ministry of Transport and Communications has been negotiate with Facebook to find ways to monitor use of the social media.
But Facebook claimed that users in Myanmar do not properly read the social media’s terms and conditions of use before creating accounts. Instead, it urged the government to educate the public on proper use of the platform.