The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, has attributed the escalation of the recent crisis in the National Assembly to the circulation of fake news, especially in the Social
The minister stated this in Abuja on Tuesday when he paid a courtesy visit to the headquarters of Blueprint Newspapers.
He said that the visit was in furtherance of the Federal Government’s campaign against fake news, which was launched on July 11, 2018.
He said, “When we launched the campaign, we did not envisage the kind of event that occurred at the National Assembly last week, specifically August 7, less than one month after the launch.
“That event, during which the National Assembly was barricaded, is a classic example of how fake news can aggravate conflicts. In fact, it was driven all the way by fake news.
”A serving Senator led the fake news onslaught, claiming that only APC members were being allowed into the chambers as a ploy to impeach the Senate President while PDP members were barred. It was fake news. No APC member was in the chambers at the time!”
Mohammed said but for the timely intervention of the Acting President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, the situation could have deteriorated and brought great opprobrium on the country.
He said that in the aftermath of the crisis, news that N21 billion and assorted weapons have been found in the residence of the sacked Director-General of the DSS, Mr. Lawal Daura, also turned out to be fake.
The minister said fake news remains a clear and present danger to the nation’s unity and democracy, and indeed to the very survival of the country, adding that it cannot and must not be treated with levity.