Garba Shehu apologised, on Twitter, to Nigerians for the false info.
The Senior Particular Assistant to President Muhammadu Buhari on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, has apologised for spreading pretend information on the variety of college students that had been kidnapped on the Authorities Science College in Kankara, Katsina State, final week Friday.
PREMIUM TIMES reported how gunmen on December 11 invaded the general public college and kidnapped over 300 college students.
The kidnap incident triggered outrage on social media with many Nigerians calling on President Muhammadu Buhari to sack the army chiefs instantly.
Whereas the Governor of Katsina State, Aminu Masari, confirmed that over 300 college students had been lacking after the assault, Mr Shehu advised BBC Hausa on December 14 that solely 10 college students had been taken away by the gunmen.
In the meantime, six days after their abduction, the 344 kidnapped college students had been freed and it grew to become clear that Mr Shehu misinformed the general public.
The scholars on Friday met with President Buhari in Katsina and a few of them additionally shared their experiences whereas with the gunmen.
Following a backlash on social media, Mr Shehu took to Twitter on Friday night to apologise for sharing unverified info regardless of being a prime aide to Mr Buhari whose administration has repeatedly vowed to self-discipline purveyors of faux information.
“I apologize for the wrong communication citing that solely 10 college students had been kidnapped on the science college, Kankara. This communication of numbers was offered by individuals that ought to ideally know. These numbers had been seen to battle with what was obtainable at the moment.”
“Please perceive that this communication was on no account accomplished to downplay the seriousness of the scenario. Please settle for my honest apologies on this matter as we proceed to maneuver our nice Nation Nigeria ahead. Thanks”, he wrote on Twitter.
Mr Shehu was, nevertheless, not the one prime official that unfold incorrect info whereas the scholars had been nonetheless in captivity.
One other official, Abike Dabiri-Erewa, the Chairman of Nigerians in Diaspora Fee, on her verified Twitter deal with, on Thursday afternoon claimed that each one the schoolboys had been rescued.
The tweet was shared some minutes earlier than Boko Haram insurgents launched a video displaying the captured boys of their custody.
This was at a time when authorities had been nonetheless making efforts to rescue the boys. The Twitter put up learn: “Yaaaay. The 333 boys captured in katsina have been rescued. Allhamdulilah ! @MBuhari administration has introduced again our boys ** #BringBackOurBoys. Our boys are again”, she tweeted.
The tweet was deleted lower than 5 minutes after it was posted. Many Twitter customers condemned Mrs Dabiri-Erewa for such a ‘careless’ put up when many mother and father had been nonetheless mourning.
She, nevertheless, claimed in a subsequent put up that her verified Twitter deal with was hacked.
“Pls do not credit score any put up on katsina boys to my twitter deal with. I misplaced management of my deal with within the final couple of minutes, together with my Instagram. I’ve recovered and adjusted my password,” she tweeted
Apparently unconvinced by the reason, one of many Twitter customers who reacted to Mrs Dabiri-Erewa’s denial, @ayemojubar, stated, “In the event you lose management of your deal with within the final couple of minutes, kindly speak to Madam Abike Lai Dabiri. She’s an skilled in that discipline.”
Pretend information and authorities officers
Whereas Mr Shehu has apologised for his false info and Mrs Dabiri-Erewa has denied accountability for hers, the Buhari administration has vowed to wage a struggle towards pretend information.
That is regardless of many Nigerians accusing the federal government of planning to make use of hate speech and pretend information as a method to clamp down on essential views.
The minister of data, Lai Mohammed, whereas assembly with on-line publishers in Lagos final yr stated: “purveyors of faux information and hate speech mustn’t count on to sleep simple.”