FACT-CHECK NEWSLETTER FOR THE WEEK ENDING AUGUST 9, 2020

As the Centre for Democracy and Development continues to take steps to counter disinformation and misinformation, myths and misconceptions on Coronavirus have not withered.

This past week, the false information countered by the CDD focused on claims of the use of an anti-malaria drug, Hydroxychloroquine, Azithromycin and Zinc for the treatment of COVID-19.

Some of the fact-checks produced by CDD are:

FACT-CHECK: Did Police Arrest Naira Marley?

On Thursday, August 6, 2020, fact-checkers at the Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD) spotted a report on a newsblog claiming that officials of the Nigeria Police Force in Lagos arrested singer, Azeez Fashola, popular know as Naira Marley.

The report which has gone viral on the blog was with the headline: “BREAKING: Police Reportedly Arrests Naira Marley in Lagos”.

Investigations by CDD fact-checkers reveal that Naira Marley was arrested by the Lagos State Police Command and arraigned at the Lagos State Special Offences (Mobile) Court, Oshodi alongside his manager, Seyi Awouga.

A statement released by the Lagos Police Command said they were arrested and arraigned on a one-count charge for violating the restriction of movement and interstates travel order during the Coronavirus lockdown.

Also, checks by CDD fact-checkers show that Naira Marley and manager have pleaded guilty to the offence. The magistrate awarded them a fine of N100,000 each.

Marley and his manager had on June 13, 2020, embarked on a non-essential trip from Lagos to Abuja and back to Lagos the same date.

They travelled through the Muritala Muhammed International Airport, Ikeja for a musical concert in Abuja which led to the temporary shutdown of the venue Jabi Lake Mall.

However, Naira Marley was flown to Abuja on Friday, August 7, 2020, by the Nigerian Police Force where a four-count charge was filed against him.

He pleaded guilty to the charges and was fined N200,000 by Magistrate Idayat Akanni.

Read full report here

FACT-CHECK: FDA Did Not Approve Hydroxychloroquine, Others for COVID-19 Treatment

A trending WhatsApp message claims that Hydroxychloroquine, Azithromycin and Zinc Sulphate can be used in the treatment of Coronavirus (COVID-19).  According to the message, a combination of the trio with a stipulated dose is the regimen approved by the US Food and Drug Administration agency for treatment of the viral disease.

Part of the message said: ‘’both drugs officially approved yesterday for use by the USA Food and Drug Administration (FDA)’’

Contrary to the claim in the viral WhatsApp broadcast that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved the use of the two drugs for the treatment of the novel coronavirus, the FDA had earlier revoked the emergency use authorisation it issued on the drugs in March 2020.

The FDA said it was concerned about the safety of the drugs due to mounting data that show it is ineffective in treating patients with the virus.

“In light of ongoing serious cardiac adverse events and other potentially serious side effects, the known and potential benefits of chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine no longer outweigh the known and potential risks for the authorised use,” the FDA had stated.

Also, the Nigerian Government had announced that hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine are undergoing clinical trials. On March 21, 2020, the Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Emmanuel Ehanire, declared that clinical trial on the anti-malaria drugs by the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) is still ongoing.

Read full report here

CDD is urging members of the public to read beyond headlines before sharing any news report, especially from blogs are in the habit of using sensational headlines to draw traffic to their blogs.

You can also forward suspicious messages for verification at +2349062910568 or contact us on twitter @CDDWestAfrica @CDDWestAfrica_H

#StopFakeNews #StopDisinformation

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