The Lagos State government has warned Lagosians to be wary of fake news circulating on the social media about the outbreak of coronavirus in the country.
This advice was contained in a press statement signed by the state Commissioner for Information and Startegy, Mr. Gbenga Omotosho, while reacting to various false stories, particularly on the social media, concerning the identification and quarantine of the 44-year-old Italian, who tested positive to Coronavirus, on his return from a business trip to Italy.
The state government said that “one of the stories alleged that the patient became angry and attempted to escape from the isolation ward due to what he described as the unsuitable condition of the Infectious Diseases Control Hospital in Yaba.
“Another said that an individual, who claimed to have driven the Italian to Ogun State, escaped from hospital and has threatened to spread the virus all over Nigeria, unless his family is paid N100 million.”
The government said, “It is disheartening that some mischief-makers are handling the Coronavirus issue with levity and peddling fake news at a time medical science is focused on how to stop the infection. This situation calls for vigilance and soberness, not wicked jokes and frivolities.
“The Lagos State Government, in conjunction with the Federal Ministry of Health and the Ogun State Government, remains focused on entrenching measures to contain the infection and will not be distracted by activities of those who seem to be unconscious of the gravity of the situation.”
While admonishing that we should understand that this is not a time for intrigues; and every Lagosian should support the government’s efforts at fighting this situation and taking precautions required to prevent an epidemic, the government added, “All residents should disregard any piece of information that does not emanate from official sources – the Federal Ministry of Health, the Lagos State Ministry of Health and the National Centre for Disease Control.
“Members of the public are implored to call the Lagos State Emergency Hotlines – 08023169485, 08033565529, 08052817243 – to report any suspected case of Coronavirus.”