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Nigerian government spells new regulation for social media platforms. Will compliance work?

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The Nigerian government wants social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook and Tiktok to be locally registered and open offices in Nigeria and appoint contact persons with the government.

The latest move by the government at regulating social media is part of the new draft regulations from the National information technology development agency published on Monday.

According to a statement by the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), the new code of practice for “interactive computer service platforms/internet intermediaries” is meant to curb online abuse, including disinformation and misinformation.

The new code stipulates that Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google, and others must “provide information to authorities on harmful accounts, suspected botnets, troll groups, and other coordinated disinformation networks and delete any information that violates Nigerian law within an agreed time.”

Recall that Nigeria’s Information Minister, Lai Mohammed, last month said the country is monitoring Meta Platforms Inc., owners of Facebook and other platforms to ensure they comply with demands to curtail hate speech on their sites.

Nigeria under President Buhari has a record of guarding free speech. Recall that from 5 June 2021 to 13 January 2022, the government of Nigeria officially banned and restricted micro-blogging site, Twitter from operating in the country. The Nigeria government had said the ban was based on “a litany of problems with the social media platform in Nigeria, where misinformation and fake news spread through it have had real-world violent consequences”

Although the conditions for the implementation of the code are yet to be fully implemented, the government said social media platforms must comply with the “new code” for continued operation in Nigeria.

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Nigerian fintech startup, CredPal, secures more funding from Cairo Angels syndicate

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A Nigerian fintech startup, CredPal, has raised funding from the Cairo Angels Syndicate Fund (CASF), a micro-venture capital fund, to expand its “buy now, pay later” incentive to customers.

Launched in 2018 by the duo of Fehintolu Olaogun and Olorunfemi Jegede, CredPal has placed itself as one of Nigeria’s most preferred consumer credit platform that gives buyers the freedom to “buy now and pay later” and helps merchants acquire more customers to increase their sales.

According to Disrupt Africa, the Google-backed CredPal has over 85,000 active customers and over 4,000 onboarded merchants, with the company announcing in March it had raised US$15 million in funding to expand its consumer credit offerings in Nigeria and to scale across Africa.

While speaking on the new funding, Olaogun said:

“This support from Cairo Angels Syndicate Fund reinforces our mission to improve the quality of life of Africans through easy access to consumer credit.

“My co-founder and I are very pleased to have them as investment partners and can’t wait for how much we’ll achieve together.”

The Cairo Angels is Egypt’s first formal network of angel investors, and since its formation has been one of the most active early-stage investors in startups and high-growth businesses in the Middle East and Africa, with 31 investee companies across 18 different sectors.

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Nigerian auto tech startup, Autochek, partners with Kenya’s Pezesha to provide asset financing to African SMEs

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Nigerian auto-tech digital solution startup, Autochek, has entered into a partnership with Kenyan fintech, Pezesha, to provide asset financing to Africa Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs).

According to Autochek Kenyan Country Manager, Bilhah Muriithi, the company aims to build digital solutions that will enhance and enable a seamless and safe automotive commerce experience across Africa, with the hub starting with Nigeria and Ghana.

“Autochek has been focused on financing retail customers, we are excited to partner with Pezesha whose key focus is on enabling SME lending.

“Autochek will continue to invest in the market while exploring new partnership opportunities to deliver solutions for driving positive change in the automotive industry in Kenya and beyond,” said Muriithi.

Autochek, Muriithi said, plans to use technology to transform the automotive buying and selling experience for African consumers, by creating a single marketplace for consumers’ automotive needs, from sourcing and financing to after sales support and warranties.

Having expanded to Kenya late last year, the partnership between Autochek and Pezesha will enable SMEs to acquire auto assets for ease of business operations and growth.

Pezesha was founded in 2016 and has created a holistic digital financial infrastructure that connects small and medium-sized businesses to working capital offered by banks, MFIs, and other financial institutions or networks.

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