Nigerian govt launches campaign against ‘fake news’

Nigerian govt launches campaign against ‘fake news’

Nigeria’s Information Minister, Lai Mohammed, has attributed the escalation of the farmers and herders crisis in Nigeria to what he described as the efforts of ‘religious bigots.’

Mr Mohammed was speaking at a press briefing in Abuja on Wednesday on the launch of the federal government’s campaign against fake news.

The Minister likened the effects of fake news to a time bomb waiting to explode.

“In a multi-ethnic and multi-religious country like ours, fake news is a time bomb. And in recent weeks, many anarchists have been doing everything possible to detonate the bomb. But for the prudence and vigilance of Nigerians, they – the religious and ethnic bigots among us – would have set the nation on fire, especially over the farmers-herders clashes as well as communal clashes,” he said.

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Mr Mohammed said the decision of the government to launch a campaign against fake news was linked to the possible effects of rumours towards the escalation of related crisis across the country.

“There is an epidemic sweeping the world. If left unchecked, it could be worse than all the plagues that the world has recorded put together. It is a clear and present danger to global peace and security. It is a threat to democracy. It is the epidemic of fake news. Mixed with hate speech, it is a disaster waiting to happen.

“For the media, the epidemic is even worse. This is because fake news, in most cases, is designed to misinform, undermines confidence in the media. And once the people lose confidence in the media, the society is in trouble.”

He said the campaign will include active collaboration with digital as well as traditional media and the National Orientation Agency to educate Nigerians on the effect of fake news on Nigeria’s democracy and corporate existence as a nation.

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Nigerian govt launches campaign against ‘fake news’

Nigerian govt launches campaign against ‘fake news’

Nigerian govt launches campaign against ‘fake news’

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