The Presidency has expressed concern over the growing wide circulation of fake news items.
Information and culture minister, Alhaji Lai Mohammed who expressed concern in a statement, accused those behind the fake news of plotting to destabilise the polity and cause disunity among the country’s various ethnic and religious groups.
He urged Nigerians to be extra vigilant in view of the worsening cases of fake news being spread by the unscrupulous persons.
Over the weekend alone, the minister noted that several major cases of fake news were recorded, each of them capable of causing panic, triggering chaos or setting one group against the other.
He said that a gory video of a blast that occurred many years ago was being circulated along with the false news of a bomb blast in Abuja, while news of a non-existent bomb blast in Lagos was also widely circulated.
“This is why we are appealing to Nigerians not to ever engage in a knee-jerk reaction to any news, and to subject all information to a very serious scrutiny by checking with security agencies and government spokespersons,’’ he said.
“On our part, we will not relent until we have exposed those who are behind this fake news phenomenon and brought them to justice,’’ Mohammed said.