Lai Mohammed, the Minister of Information and Culture, has denied that he has tested positive for COVID-19.
Despite reports that some presidential aides have been infected with the virus, the minister stated that he has not been isolated or treated for the illness.
“For the record, the minister does not have COVID-19,” his media aide Segun Adeyemi said in a statement on Sunday.
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“That report, which was first published by an online newspaper before being picked up by some mainstream lapdog media, highlights the uphill battle we’re up against in our fight against fake news and misinformation.”
“When in doubt, leave it out,” says a journalism maxim. The basic principles of truthfulness and accuracy, among others, are also enshrined in the journalistic code of ethics. “Those standards were not met by the report in question.”
Empathy, not stigmatization, is the way to go.
Mohammed was present at the Federal Executive Council meeting on Wednesday, an extraordinary FEC meeting on Thursday, and the swearing-in of the Minister of State for Works and Housing on Friday, according to Adeyemi.
He explained that on Wednesday and Thursday, his principal coordinated the post-FEC press briefings, and he wondered how he could have done so from an isolation center.
Mohammed would not have hesitated to publicly announce his COVID-19 status if he was infected, according to the minister’s spokesman. Mohammed is a member of the Presidential Steering Committee on COVID-19.
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“After all, he’s not only fully vaccinated, but he’s also had the booster shot,” Adeyemi explained, “a situation that provides him with multiple layers of protection even if he contracts the virus.” “Those who become infected with the virus deserve our sympathy and prayers, not our condemnation.”
“In the best tradition of journalism, we expect the online newspaper that published the fake news to not only retract it, but also to apologize to the minister for causing him such embarrassment, especially during this holiday season.”