Nigeria: WhatsApp Group Members Arrested for Circulating Fake News

Photo: Nairobi News

Abuja — Police in northern Nigeria have arrested an administrator and members of a WhatsApp group for allegedly circulating claims that a woman was trafficking children.

The two women and a man have been arrested in the Kano city following a complaint by the victim, who is a civil servant.

Superintendent Magaji Musa Maaji, Kano police spokesperson, told media that the suspects had circulated pictures of the victim in social media, with the aim of defaming her.

This, according to law enforcers, also exposed her to mob attacks.

"The police command is providing security for the woman for fear of mob attacks because her image and the false report on her have gone viral," Maaji said.

He said the suspects had since been released on bail.

"They have pleaded for forgiveness but will still be arraigned in court."

Maaji warned members of the public from circulating on social media material that could harm national security and breach public peace in the volatile West African country.

He called on social media users to be aware of material they received and shared, particularly Whatsapp.

"We should guard against the misuse of social media platforms to share and forward objectionable or fake messages," the police spokesperson said.

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