A message which has gone viral on WhatsApp is warning recipients to stay indoors at night and lock up their doors and windows as the Federal Government of Nigeria plans to conduct an aerial containment of the Coronavirus at midnight.
The message said FG will be ‘’spraying chemicals in the air tonight with (a) private jet to protect the country because of the CORONAVIRUS’’.
The message alleges the health ministry intends to use a private jet for that purpose.
A review of the communications channels of the government agencies involved in government’s response to the spread of Coronavirus, including the Federal Ministry of Health, the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control and Lagos State Ministry of Health shows that there is no available public communication from any them on the alleged plan.
Also, in the various press conferences and regular updates done by the Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire and Lagos State Commissioner for Health Professor Akin Abayomi, there has not been any mention of such planned measure by the government of Nigeria.
Standard practice all over the World involves proper communication by the government agencies involved to the citizens of such measures through all official and unofficial means of the date and time ahead of time.
The WhatsApp broadcast which is full of typographical errors and grammatical mistakes also failed to mention which of the Ministry of Health issued the statement.
There is no available proof that the Federal Ministry of Health issued the warning to carry out an aerial containment of COVID-19 as alleged in the WhatsApp broadcast. The CDD and National Orientation Agency (NOA) is urging members of the public to disregard the message.
Beware of Fake News on Coronavirus. Don’t create it, don’t spread it.