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Fake news trails South Africa, Nigeria spat

High crime rate in local communities
Unemployed youths committing crime in South Africa's local communities, file photo

from EMEKA OKONKWO in Abuja, Nigeria
ABUJA – THE Nigerian government has dismissed as fake news the online reports suggesting a bomb explosion at the South African High Commission in Abuja.

A video has been circulating in social media depicting a purported explosion at the high commission in the capital city, following claims it was a retaliatory attack to the violence against Nigerians in South Africa.

Alhaji Lai Mohammed, Nigeria Minister of Information and Culture, said the video was in fact of an explosion at the Emab Plaza, also in Abuja, in June 2014.

He alleged the opposition People’s Democratic Party (PDP) was circulating the video cause panic and chaos among the populace.

“It is now apparent that the desperate opposition has decided to use fake news and disinformation as handy tools in their avowed determination to make Nigeria ungovernable, having lost woefully at the polls,” Mohammed said.

He added, “A pattern is emerging of the antics of the desperate opposition to latch on to the use of fake news and disinformation as a strategy to trigger chaos in the country.”

Nigeria and South Africa were both beset by violence last week. In South Africa, mobs looted and demolished some shops mostly belonging to foreign nationals.

Some enraged Nigerians reacted by similar action against some South African businesses in the West African country.

There has been a flurry of fake news, prominently the reports that Boko Haram threatened to attack South Africa.

About 12 people died from recent South Africa’s xenophobic violence.

– CAJ News


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