Abuja — The Federal Government yesterday described media reports that the Federal High Court in Osogbo, Osun State, ordered the National Assembly to begin impeachment of President Muhammadu Buhari as fake news.
Meanwhile, the government has launched the National Campaign Against Fake News and appealed to the media to lead the campaign as fake news and misinformation could pose a threat to the 2019 general elections.
While launching the campaign in Abuja, Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, said fake news was an epidemic sweeping the world, which if left unchecked, could be worse than all the plagues the world has recorded in history.
He said: "Last Thursday, a national daily had on its front page Court orders National Assembly to begin impeachment of Buhari. The problem with that news item is that it is fake news."
According to the certified true copy of the order, the Presiding Judge of the Federal High Court in Osogbo ordered: "The applicants are hereby granted leave to issue and bring an Application for the order of Mandamus to compel first to third respondents to start impeachment proceedings against the fourth respondent, the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
This was manipulated to read that the court has given the go-ahead for the National Assembly to commence impeachment proceedings against the President, insisting, this was fake news.
He stressed that such fake news was not just a threat to democracy, but also a clear danger to global peace and security.
"For the media, the epidemic is even worse because fake news, in most cases are designed to misinform, undermines confidence in the media and once the people lose confidence in the media, the society is in trouble.