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Kano State Government Did Not Relax Lockdown for One Week

By Fact CheckNo Comments

CLAIM

At 11 pm on Monday, May 11, 2020, fact-checkers at the Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD) spotted a WhatsApp broadcast claiming that the Kano state government has relaxed the Coronavirus lockdown earlier imposed on the state.

The message, also sent to the CDD fact-checking WhatsApp number, claimed that the relaxation of the lockdown was announced by the state government to enable residents to participate in the Eid-el-Fitr preparation due in 10 days.

FACT

At a meeting with religious leaders on April 14, 2020, the Kano State Governor, Abdullahi Ganduje, announced the imposition of a one-week lockdown in the state.

The governor said the lockdown, with effect from April 16, 2020, will help contain the spread of Coronavirus among Kano state residents. At the expiration of the first week, the state government extended the lockdown for another week.

Also, on April 27, 2020, President Muhammadu Buhari imposed a two-week lockdown which expired on May 11, on the state.

However, shortly after the expiration of the lockdown issued by the president, the Kano State Commissioner for information and Culture, Muhammad Garba, announced another round of a week extension

Garba in a statement issued at midnight on Monday, May 11, 2020, said the decision was reached by the state after consultations with the federal government and key stakeholders in the health sector.

He emphasised that the measure is aimed at further reducing the indiscriminate person to person contact considered as one of the major ways the disease is being spread.

CONCLUSION

The Kano State Government has not relaxed the COVID-19 lockdown. 

The CDD is urging the general public to disregard WhatsApp message widely circulated. The public is also advised to adhere to all measures laid down by the authorities to curb the spread of the disease.

You can also forward suspicious messages for verification at +2349062910568 or contact us on twitter: @CDDWestAfrica.

#AvoidFakeNews

#StaySafe

Gwamnan Sokoto Bai Mutu Ba

By Fact CheckNo Comments

Tushen Magana:

A ranar 11 ga watan Mayun shekara ta 2020, wani zauren yanar gizo ya wallafa wani labarai da yayi masa take kamar haka: “Labari da dumi-duminsa! Gwamnan Sokoto ya mutu”

Labarin yna dauke da hoto Gwamna Aminu Waziri Tambuwal na Jahar Sokoto kuma ya bayyana cewa Tambuwal din ya mutu.

Gaskiyar Magana:

Binciken da CDD ta aiwatar ya gano cewa Gwamna Aminu Waziri Tambuwal yanan a raye. Binciken masu tantance sahihancin labari na CDD din ya kara gano cewa gundarin labarin ya nuna cewa Gwmnan Jahar Sokoto na farar hula na biyu wato Dr. Garba Nadama shine ya rasu a ranar 4 ga watan Mayun 2020.

Labarin wanda aka karanta shi sama da sau 38,000 wanda suka rubuta shi sun tsarashi dan da nufin jan hankalin mutane dan su karanta shi kuma su ziyarci shafin u na yanar gizo.

Gwamnan Jahar Sokoto a halin yanzu wato Aminu Waziri Tambuwal shine ya sanar da rasuwar tsohon gwamnan inda ya bayyana alhini da jimamin sa game rashin.

Tambuwal ya bayyana ta’aziyyarsa ga iyalan marigayi Garba bisa rashin da jahar Sokoton tayi na rashin babban dan siyasar.

Acikin labarin, majiyar ta rawaito labarin inda ta bayyana rasuwar marigayi Garba kuma tace Gwamna Tambuwal ne ya sanar rasuwar a madadin gwamnatin Jahar Sokoto amma sai sukayi anfani da jikitaccen jigon labari dama hoton Gwamnan dake mulki yanzu.

Har wayau bincikene CDD ya gani cewa zauren yanar gizon day a wallafa labarin mai suna www|dot|UniqueMusic|dot|com|ng an samar dashi ne wallafa wakoki amma ya bige wallafa labarai kuma yana anfani da wani tsari da ake kira “clickbait” a turance dan jan hankalin mutane su ziyarci shafin.

Shin me ake nufi da tsarin clickbait?

Clickbait wani salo da mazanbata ke anfani dashi ta hanyar yin anfani da wani adireshin shafin yanar gizo da masu wallafi labarai ke anfani dashi dan jan hankalin mutane su zitarci shafin su. Akasari masu wallafa labarai a zaurukan yanar gizo ne ke anfani dashi saboda karawa kansu yawan masu ziyartan shafin su.

Kammalawa:

Gwamna Aminu Waziri Tambuwal yana nan a raye. CDD tana jan hankalin mutane da su rika karanta gundarin labari dan tantance shi kafin yadashi musamman idan labarin ya fito daga zauren yada gulmace-gulmace dake gina jigon labari mai daukar hankali.

Faifan Bidiyo da aka Yada a Yanar Gizo Dake Nuna Dandazon Mutane Yayin Jana’izar Marigayi Sarkin Rano Bidiyo Ne Bogi!

By Fact CheckNo Comments

Tushen Magana:

A ranar Asabar, 2 ga watan Mayun shekara ta 2020, masu tantance sahihancin labarai na Cibiyar Bunkasa Demokaradiyya da Da Cigaba sun gano wani bidiyo dake nuna dandazon jama’a yayin jana’izar Marigayi Mai  Martaba Sarkin Rano, Alhaji Tafida Abubakar Ila.

Acikin bidiyon wadda aka yadashi sosai a shafin Twitter and manhajar WhatsApp anga yadda cincirundon jama’a keta turmutsitsi cikin nuna juyayi game da rasuwar Sarkin. Hakanan anga yadda mutane sukayi watsi da umarnin bada tazara cudanya dan kare kansu daga cutar Corona.

Tun barkewar cutar Corona, masu yada labaran karya sunyi ta anfani da mutuwar dake aikuwa a Jahar Kano dan yada labaran bogi da nufin dora mutane akan gurguwar fahimta.

Gaskiyar Magana:

Masu tantance sahihancin labarai na CDD, sun gano cewa bidiyon da akace andauke shi ne a lokacin jana’izar Marigayi Martaba Sarkin Ranon andukeshi ne a lokacin binne babban Malami, wato Malam Goni Kolo wanda shima ya rasu ranar da Sarkin Ranon ya rasu.

Marigayi Malam Goni ya rasu ne unguwar Mafoni dake garin Maiduguri yayin da Dr. Tafida Abubakar Ila ya rasu a garin Rano dake Jahar Kano.

Binciken kwakwaf da CDD ta gudanar ya gano cewa yaren Kanuri wanda shine yaren mutanen Maiduguri shine akeyi acikin bidiyon. Yaren da akeyi a Rano sune Fulatanci da Hausa.

Kammalawa: Bidiyon da aka yada a shafin Twitter da WhatsApp dama sauran shafukan sada zumunta na zamani dake nuna dandazon jama’a suna gogayya da juna bidiyo ne da aka dauka a garin Maiduguri lokacin jana’izar wani Shehin Malami. CDD tana kira ga jama’a da watsi da bidiyon da kuma daina yadashi.

#AdainaYadaLabaranKarya #MuHadaHannuDakileYaduwarCutarCorona

There is no coronavirus in Nigeria – US-based nurse speaks

By Fact CheckNo Comments

CLAIM: One of Nigerian news platform, legit.ng on May 6, 2020, published an article on a United States of America based nurse claiming that there is no Coronavirus in Nigeria.

The article, with over 99,000 views, was published based on a video uploaded on YouTube with over 10,000 views as of May 11, 2020.

In the video, the nurse who is from New York made the first claim comparing the city to Nigeria as a nation.

“Well coronavirus in Nigeria, we don’t believe that it’s really there. Because Nigeria’s population is just like New York, and truly if coronavirus is there, trust me we would have had cases more than the United States,” the US-based nurse said.

Further elaborating her claim, the US-based nurse said she does not believe there is a case of the virus infection in Nigeria because, to her, the number does not seem to add up with the nation’s population.

She also queried how patients said to have contracted the disease in Nigeria are being taken care of.

“Who is really taking care of these people? Who are the nurses? Which hospital were they in? How many days were they in the hospital?” the nurse asked.

“So to me and some other Nigerians, we do not believe that Nigeria has the case. I think because of the herbs and home remedies that we are taking, I think it really helps. And this very virus doesn’t survive under heat – so maybe that could be an advantage,” she concluded.

FACT: Checks by fact-checkers at the Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD) show that the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has been tracking the number of cases in Nigeria since the index case was imported on February 27, 2020. 

Also, some notable individuals in the country have contracted the disease including late Abba Kyari, the past Chief of Staff to President Muhammadu Buhari, who died from complications of COVID-19; the governor of Bauchi State, Bala Mohammed, and his Oyo State counterpart, Seyi Makinde, among many others.

The nurse’s claim that New York City is just like Nigeria is false as the former has a population of nearly 20 million, while Nigeria’s population is projected at around 200 million

Also, while considering the testing capacity in New York and Nigeria, there is indeed a gap in healthcare and testing of suspected cases of COVID-19.

While New York Governor, Andrew Cuomo on Saturday, April 25, 2020, announced that the city aims at testing 40,000 people daily, Nigeria as a nation is still struggling to test a little above 1,500 people per day.

From the analysis, it does not mean that Nigeria does not have coronavirus, because, even with limited testing capacity, Nigeria already has over 4,000 cases of confirmed positive COVID-19 as at 10 May 2020.

CONCLUSION: In conclusion, claims by the nurse that there are no cases of Coronavirus in Nigeria and that New York city’s population can be compared to Nigeria’s are false.

CDD urges the general public to desist from disseminating such disinformation and always verify reports from authorised sources.

You can also forward suspicious messages for verification at +2349062910568 or contact us on twitter: @CDDWestAfrica.

It is misleading, Sokoto State Governor not Dead

By Fact CheckNo Comments

VERDICT: Misleading headline, Picture

CLAIM: On May 11, 2020, an online blog published a breaking news story with the headline ‘’Breaking! Sokoto State Governor Dies ’’. 

The report had the picture of the current Governor of Sokoto State, Aminu Tambuwal, as its feature image, portraying the governor is the one who died. 

FACT: 
Checks by fact-checkers at the Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD) shows that Governor Tambuwal is not dead.

Also, CDD checks show that person being written about in the blog post was the second civilian governor of Sokoto State, Dr Garba Nadama, who died on Monday, May 4, 2020.

The post which has been read more than 38,000 times is a clickbait employed by the blog to drive online traffic to the website.

Dr Garba’s death was announced by Governor Tambuwal who had expressed shock and sadness over the former governor’s death. Tambuwal while announcing Garba’s death also condoled with the family of the late politician.

In addition, the blog within the body of the article reported Garba’s death correctly and stated clearly that his death was announced by Governor Tambuwal on behalf of Sokoto State even with the misleading headline and preview image.

Further review of the blog www|dot|UniqueMusic|dot|com|ng shows that platform was created primarily for sharing music content but publishes news stories, mostly as clickbaits to drive traffic to the site. 

What is clickbait?

Clickbait is a deceptive hyperlink text or thumbnail link used by publishers on media platforms to attract the attention of internet users or readers.
They are used mostly by bloggers to drive online traffic to their platforms.

CONCLUSION
Governor Tambuwal, the executive governor of Sokoto state is not dead. 

CDD is urging members of the public to read beyond headlines before sharing any news report especially from gossip blogs who are in the habit of using clickbait headlines to draw traffic to their blogs.

Gwamnatin Tarayya Bata Sanar Da 1 Ga Watan Yunin Shekara Ta 2020 ba Matasayin Ranar Komawa Makaranta Fadin Kasa

By Fact CheckNo Comments

Tushen Magana:

A ranar 7 ga watan Afirilun shekara ta 2020 masu tantance sahihancin labarai na Cibiyar Bunkasa Demokaradiyya da Cigaba sun gano wassu rahotanni da dake yawo a yanar gizo suna ikirarin cewa gwamnatin tarayya ta sanar da ranar 1 ga watan Yunin shekara ta 2020 a matsayin ranar da jami’o’i da kwalejojin fasaha a fadin kasa zasu bude domin cigaba da karatu.

Gaskiyar Magana:

A watan Maris din shekara ta 2020 ne ma’aikatar lafiya ta kasa ta bada umarnin rufe dukkan makarantu a fadin Najeriya baki daya sakamakon tabbatar bullar cutar Corona. Ma’aikatar ilimin ta bayyana cewa rufe makarantun daya ne daga cikin matakan kare yaduwar cutar Corona.

Tantancewar da CDD ta aiwatar ta gano cewa duk rahotannin da aka yada gdin sun dogara ne da dalilin cewa an rufe makarantu a watan Maris sukayi hasashen bude makarantun a ranar 1 ga watan Yunin shekara ta 2020.

Idan za’a iya tunawa dai Mr. Sonny Echono a madadin babbabn sakatare g minitsan ilimi Malam Adamu Adamu ya bada umarnin rufe makarantun jaddada hadin kai gud 104 a fadin kasa baki daya kafin ranar 26 ga watan Maris ko kafin haka na tsawon wata guda saboda fuskantar annobar cutar Corona.

Har wayau CDD ta gano cewa duk rahotannin da suka bada sanarwar bude makarantun sun gaza danganta labaran nasu da wanda ya fadi labarin, da yawa daga cikin rahotonnin sunyi anfani ne da hotunan Shugaba Muhammadu Buhari ba tare da danganta labarin dashi ba.

Ma’aikatar ilimin a ranar 23 ga watan Afirilun shekara ta 2020 ta maida martani game labarin bude makarantun inda ta bayyana labarin a matsayin na bogi. Karamin Ministan ilimi  Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba yayi bayani a wani taron manema labarai a babban birnin tarayya Abuja inda yace har yanzu ba’a saka ranar dawowa makarantar ba.

Nwajiuba yace gwamnatin tarayya baza ta jefa rayuwar yan makaranta bat a hanyar bude makarantu ba tare da nazari ba. “Shugaban kasa yana ta kokarin saita tattalin arziki sannu a hankali, in angama wannan za’a bude makarantu, amma yanzu baza muyi saurin sanar mutane lokacin bude makarantun ba”, inji Nwajiuba.

A lokacin da yake sassauta doka hana fita a jihohin Lagos, Osun da babban birnin tarayya Abuja, Shugaba Buhari ya bayyana cewa makarantu zasu cigaba da kasancewa a rufe a fadin kasa baki daya har sai angama nazari akansu, Buhari  ya shawarci hukumomin makarantu da su cigaba gabatar da koyo da koyarwa ta hanyar yanar gizo.

Binciken da CDD ta gudanar a shafin yanar gizo na ma’aitakar ilimin ta tayrayya ya nuna cewa ma’aikatar bata fitar wata sanarwar ba game da bude makarantu ba.

Hasalima ma’aikatar ilimin ta wallafa wani jawabi a shafin tan a Facebook inda ta nesanta kanta da sanarwar da akea yada cewa ta bada umarnin bude makarantu, ga abinda ma’aikatar ta wallafa, “Kuyi hankali da labaran bogi!!! Har yanzu babu kayyadajjiyar ranar komawa makaranta, muna kira ga mutane da suyi watsi da sanarwar dake yawo. Kuyi watsi wannan sanarwa”

Kammalawa:

Har yanzu gwamnatin tarayya bata tsaida ranar bude makarantu dake fadin kasarnan ba. CDD tana shawartan iyaye, makarantu dama dalibai da suyi watsi da jita-jitar zaurukan yanar gizo da kafafan sada zumunta na zamani ke yadawa cewa za’a koma makaranta a ranar 1 ga watan Yunin shekara ta 2020

Cutar COVID-19: Gidan Gyaran Hali na Kasa Reshen Jahar Kano Bai Sanar Da Cewa Zai Sake Fursononi Ba.

By Fact CheckNo Comments

Tushen Magana:

Masu tantance sahihancin labarai na Cibiyar Bunkasa Demokaradiyya da Cigaba wato CDD sunci karo da wata sanarwa da aka yada ta manhajar WhatsApp dake cewa hukumar gyaran hali ta kasa reshen Jahar Kano ta shirya dan sallamar fursononi dake tsare a hannunta, sanarwar ta kara da cewahukumar zata sake fursononin da suka kwashe kimanin shekaru uku ko fiye da haka a gidan gyaran halin reshen Jahar Kanon.

Sanarwar wadda aka tsarata cikin harshen Hausa ta bukaci mutane musamman wadanda ked a yan uwa a gidan gyaran halin da gabatar da lambar kotu da lambar zargin da ake yiwa yan uwan nasu da sake su ba tare da bata lokaci ba.

Ga abinda sanarwar ta kara da fada kamar haka: “duk wanda yake da dan’uwa ko yar’uwa dake garkame a daya daga cikin gidan gyaran hali na Jahar Kano kuma wannan dan’uwa nasa ya ko ta kwashe shekaru uku ko ka sama da haka ba tare da fuskantar shari’a ba, aturo lambar shari’ar sad a lambar kotun dake sauraron karar sad a fitar dashi kamar yadda Shugaban Kasa ya bada umarni. Atura bayanai ga wannan lamba 08067139558”

Gaskiyar Magana:

Masu tantance sahihancin labarai na Cibiyar Bunkasa Demokaradiyya da Cigaba wato CDD sun tuntubi jami’in yada labarai da hulda da jama’a na hukumar gyaran halin ta kasa reshen jahar Kano, DSC Musbahu Lawan Kofar Nasarawa dan jin ba’asin sa game da sanarwar inda take ya bayyana sanarwar a matsayin aikin yan danfara masu aniyar zanbatar mutane yana mai bayyana cewa kwata-kwata sanarawar bata fito daga wajen suba.

Kofar Nasarawa yace: “a matsayina na jami’in hulda da jama’a na wannan huukuma a Jahar Kano, ni naked a hakkin sanar da jama’a duk wani bayani da zai fito daga gidajen gyaran hali, kuma ni ban bada wata makamanciyar wannan ba”.

DSC Musbahu yace basu san waye mai lambar da akace a tura bayanai dan sake fursononin ba dan haka suna kira ga mutane suyi watsi da sanarwa saboda rashin sahihancin ta, hasali ma bata fito daga hukumar gyaran hali reshen Jahar Kano ba.

Kammalawa:

Sanarwar da ake yadawa ta manhajar WhatsApp cewa hukumar gidan gyaran hali ta kasa reshen Jahar Kano na kira ga yan uwan fursononin da suka kwashe shekaru uku da su turo lambar kotun dake sauraron karar su da lambar karar tasu dan sake su karye ne! CDD na kira ga jama’a da suyi watsi da sanarwar da kuma daina yada ta.

FG Did Not Announce June 1, 2020, as Resumption Date for All Schools

By Fact CheckNo Comments

CLAIM: On April 7, 2020, fact-checkers at the Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD) spotted reports published by several online platforms claiming that the Federal Government of Nigeria has announced Monday, June 1, 2020, as resumption date for all Universities and Polytechnics in Nigeria.

FACT: Following the Coronavirus Pandemic, the Federal Government of Nigeria in March 2020, announced the closure of all schools in the country until further notice. The Federal Ministry of Education said the closure is part of measures needed to contain the spread of the COVID-19 virus.

A review of the news blogs shows that the reports relied on the timeframe in the release by the government for closure of school in March 2020 as the basis for concluding that schools will be reopened on June 1, 2020.

‘’We may recall that Mr Sonny Echono on behalf of the Permanent Secretary to the Ministry of Education, Adamu Adamu directed all 104 Unity Schools in the Country should close on or before 26th of March 2020 for one month as a proactive measure to contain the spread of the Coronavirus also known as COVID-19,” the reports said.

Our investigation reveals that none of the news sources quoted who made the declaration for a resumption as most of them used the picture of President Muhammadu Buhari without attributing it to him.

The Ministry[  ,on April 23, 2020,  had reacted to rumours that schools will resume in November 2020 to debunk the stories. Afterwards, the Minister of State for Education, Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba granted a press conference in Abuja stating that there is no resumption date for schools yet.

Nwajiuba said “The Federal Government is not ready to put children at risk by opening schools. “The President addressed the issue of the opening of the economy gradually. Until that is done, we cannot foresee or immediately tell you when all the schools will be reopened.”

The minister of state for education said it will be improper for the Federal Government to give a definite date for resumption.

He said: “It has to be in tandem with these opening terms. We don’t want to put our children at risk. None of these schools can function on their own without society.’’

Furthermore, in the directive easing the total lockdown placed on Lagos, Ogun, and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja, President Muhammadu Buhari said schools all over the country will remain closed for further evaluation, and encouraged school authorities to continue with e-learning and virtual teaching.

A review of the official website of the Ministry and other online channels also shows the ministry did not release such directive to schools as the reports claim.

Rather, the Ministry, in response to our enquiries, posted a rebuttal on its official Facebook page. It reads ‘’ FAKE NEWS ALERT!!!! There is currently no confirmed date on the resumption of Schools Nationwide. These are purported news articles to dissuade the public. Kindly Disregard.”

In the last 24 hours, Nigeria recorded 386 new cases of the virus, its highest number of people testing positive to the novel Coronavirus since it was first detected in Nigeria in February.

CONCLUSION

The Federal Government of Nigeria is yet to set a definite date for the opening of schools across the country. CDD is urging parents, schools, and students to disregard the rumour being peddled online by bloggers and on social media.

Viral Video Showing Crowded Emir of Rano’s Funeral Is Fake!

By Fact CheckNo Comments

CLAIM

On Saturday, May 2, 2020, fact-checkers at the Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD) spotted a video showing a throng at a funeral alleged to be that of the late Emir of Rano, Alhaji Tafida Abubakar II, in Kano.

In the video seen majorly on Twitter and WhatsApp showed a crowd of people chanting some slogans, disregarding the guidelines for preventive measures against the spread of the Coronavirus (COVID-19).

Since the outbreak of Coronavirus purveyors of this false news exploit the ongoing news about incessant death in Kano State to disinform people.

FACT

Investigations by CDD fact-checkers revealed that the video is from the funeral of a cleric, Mallam Goni Kolo, who died on the same day as the Emir.

While Kolo’s funeral took place in Mafoni ward Maiduguri, Borno State, the Emir was buried in Kano.

Further checks by the Centre showed that the people in the video spoke Kanuri, a native language of the Maiduguri people.

It uis uncommon to hear people speak Kanuri in Rano, a Local Government Area of Hausa-Fulani community of Kano state.

CONCLUSION

The video being shared as clips from the funeral of Emir of Rano who died on Saturday, May 2, 2020, is fake. The CDD urges the public to disregard the announcement.

#StopFakeNews

#StaySafe

CORONAVIRUS IN NIGERIA: False Claims to Ignore for week ending May 2, 2020

By Blog, Fact CheckNo Comments

In the past week, we have continued to explore the trending narratives that have emerged from the disinformation spread in Nigeria.

We are just over two months from our index case, and we are seeing a series of interesting developments. 

Here are some of the more popular false stories that we fact-checked between April 26, 2020, and May 2, 2020.

Federal Government Hiding Facts About COVID-19 from Citizens

WhatsApp has continued to be a widely used platform for the dissemination of disinformation. A widely circulated broadcast last  week claimed that the Nigerian government has been hiding vital facts about the Coronavirus outbreak in the country. 

This message which follows an emerging trend stems from deep-seated distrust of the Nigerian government. The broadcast in question names Nigeria’s first female chartered engineer, Mrs Olu Maduka, as the source of the claim.

The message reels out imaginary stories of patients on life support, including a one-month-old baby, who are struggling to breathe. In the message, Mrs Maduka is alleged to have stated that the case of the one-month-old baby made her cry. 

The viral message also alleged that the figures announced by the Nigerian government to the public are about 10% of the actual number of confirmed COVID-19 cases. It also claimed that the Nigerian Engineer saw eight corpses within one-hour of her visit to the Mainland Hospital, an isolation centre in Lagos.

Investigations by fact-checkers from CDD revealed that Mrs Maduka, who was conferred with the National Honour of Member of the Federal Republic (MFR) in 2008, did not send the WhatsApp broadcast. 

In a video made by her, Mrs Maduka said she was never at the Mainland Hospital in Lagos as claimed in the message neither did she write an article accusing the Nigerian Government of concealing the true state of the fight against Coronavirus. Read our in-depth fact-check here.

Kano Recorded 4 Not 74 new COVID-19 Cases

The Centre spotted numerous online reports claiming that Kano state has recorded 74 new cases of Coronavirus (COVID-19)in the state on Saturday, April 25, 2020,

The reports which appeared on online newspapers and across various social media platforms claimed that the Kano state governor, Abdullahi Gandujeduring a press conference announced that the state recorded 74 new positive cases of COVID-19.

According to the reports, Ganduje said that out of 487 samples of the suspected cases taken from the state, 74 turned out positive.

CDD fact checkers investigated the claim and found that contrary to what several newspapers and social media users have reported, only four new cases of Coronavirus were recorded in Kano on Saturday, April 25, 2020.

A confirmation of the investigation was also made by the Nigerian Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) on their website.

The NCDC announced that only four cases turned out positive in the state bringing the number of COVID-19 patients to 77 in the state as at that time.

The agency also said that Kano state has recorded only one death from Coronavirus and zero discharges as at 11:55 pm on April 25, 2020. Read our in-depth report here.

CDD, therefore, urges members of the public to disregard unverified claims while advising that the authenticity of reports be thoroughly checked before publishing and dissemination.

CORONAVIRUS MISINFORMATION: Unpacking Trump’s claims on disinfectant and ultraviolet light

By Fact CheckNo Comments

On April 23, 2020, U.S. President Donald Trump, in a press briefing at the White House, made two alarming claims about potential cures to COVID-19. 

Fact-checks by the Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD) reveal that this is not the first time the US president has made controversial and dangerous statements about the virus.

In the previous month, Trump praised the anti-malaria drug, chloroquine, as a treatment for Coronavirus infection. 

Unfortunately, after the President validated the drug, Nigeria recorded multiple cases of Chloroquine poisoning, as people consumed the drug believing it would protect them from COVID-19. 

Here are two new false claims the US president has made.

Claim 1

“I see the disinfectant, where it knocks it out in one minute. And is there a way we can do something like that by injection inside or almost a cleaning because you see it gets in the lungs and it does a tremendous number on the lungs.” – Donald Trump, U.S. President, White House, 23 April 2020

With this claim it appears that the US President believes that because disinfectants could destroy the virus outside the body, they could have the same effect inside the body.

CDD fact-checks show that this line of reasoning is faulty at its best, and extremely dangerous at worst. Disinfectants are designed to be used on hard surfaces and not within the sensitive interiors of the human body. 

Also, warnings by manufacturers of these products clearly state that ingesting disinfectant puts one at risk of poisoning and even death. 

This claim by Donald Trump has drawn responses from eminent experts around the world.

For instance, in a CNN report, the US Food and Drug Administration commissioner, Dr Stephen Hahn, said he would not encourage the ingestion of disinfectant for any reason. 

Hahn who is also a member of the White House coronavirus task force said: “I certainly wouldn’t recommend the internal ingestion of a disinfectant.”

Also, Robert Reich, a professor of Public Policy at the University of California, Berkeley, said that Trump’s briefings on the novel virus are becoming dangerous.

Reich in a tweet said: “Trump’s briefings are actively endangering the public’s health. Boycott the propaganda. Listen to the experts. And please don’t drink disinfectant.”

Interestingly, even manufacturers of disinfectants have stepped in with Reckitt Benckiser, the makers of Lysol and Dettol countering the US President’s claim.

RB in a statement warned that: “Under no circumstanceshould our disinfectant products be administered into the human body (through injection, ingestion or any other route). As with all products, our disinfectant and hygiene products should only be used as intended and in line with usage guidelines. Please read the label and safety information”.

Claim 2

“I said supposing you brought the light inside the body, which you can do either through the skin or in some other way. And I think you said you’re going to test that too… So, we’ll see, but the whole concept of the light, the way it kills it in one minute – that’s pretty powerful.” – Donald Trump, U.S. President, White House, 23 April 2020

Trump’s second striking claim is about the therapeutic effects of light and heat, specifically referencing ultraviolet (UV) light in destroying the deadly virus.

This was addressed in a statement by the WHO which counters multiple myths and warns people not to sterilise their hands with UV light, since radiation can cause skin irritation.

Furthermore, in a conversation with CDD fact-checkers, the head of the Institute of Human Virology Nigeria (IHVN), Dr Patrick Dakum, explained that the virus that causes the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is stable for several hours in aerosols and on surfaces.

Dakum said in a new study from National Institutes of Health, CDC, UCLA and Princeton University scientists in the New England Journal of Medicine, scientists found that severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) was detectable in aerosols for up to three hours, up to four hours on copper, up to 24 hours on cardboard and up to two to three days on plastic and stainless steel. 

“There is no evidence that sunlight kills the new coronavirus,” the virologist told CDD fact-checkers.

He explained further that, UV-light is electromagnetic radiation with a wavelength from 10 nm (with a corresponding frequency of approximately 30 PHz) to 400 nm (750 THz), shorter than that of visible light but longer than X-rays. 

Increasing UV wavelength can kill the coronavirus on the surface but the frequency is different in sunlight.

Also, UV radiation is present in sunlight and constitutes about 10% of the total electromagnetic radiation output from the Sun.

NIGERIAN CONTEXT

With each passing moment, it becomes abundantly clear that health messaging from Donald Trump will need to be approached more critically, and that listeners should be aware of the guidance of experts and follow expert advice. 

In the hours following his press conference, New York City recorded a spike in calls from its poison control centre where callers relayed fears of overexposure to household cleaners. 

The danger in the Nigerian context is the propensity for dangerous and drastic behaviour such as the ingestion of disinfectants such as Dettol.

Therefore, it is necessary to provide a counterpoint where safe health information is made readily available to Nigerians.

CONCLUSION

Claims by the US President, Donald Trump, that ingestion of disinfectants and exposure to UV-lights can destroy the novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) is false.

The CDD urges the general public never to ingest disinfectant or expose themselves to UV-light in a bid to destroy the virus.

You can also forward suspicious messages for verification at +2349062910568 or contact us on twitter: @CDDWestAfrica.

COVID-19: Kano Correctional Service Never Announced Readiness to Release Inmates

By Fact CheckNo Comments

CLAIM:

Fact-checkers at the Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD) on Saturday, May 2, 2020, spotted a WhatsApp broadcast claiming that inmates who have served for more than three years without trial would be released by the Kano State Command of the Nigerian Correctional Service.

The broadcast written in Hausa urged relatives to send details of inmates including case and court numbers to a number for further action based on “the directive issued by the President.”

The message reads: “Anybody that has a relative in any of the correctional centres in any of the prisons and the person has stayed for more than three years without trial, just send the case number and court number of the person so we can get them out as directed by the President. Send the details to this number 08067139558.”

FACT:

CDD fact-checkers contacted the Public Relations Officer of the Nigerian Correctional Service Kano state command, DSC Musbahu Lawan Kofar, who debunked the claim.

Kofar said the message circulating on WhatsApp is the handiwork of fraudsters whose only intention is to dupe gullible Nigerians.

Kofar said: “As the public relations officer of the service in Kano I have been the one conveying information of the service and engaging with the public, and I have not given any announcement of that nature.”

He said the number on the said broadcast is not from the command neither is the entire announcement.

“In fact we have no idea who the user of that number is, we want the public to disregard the announcement as it did not originate from us,” Kofar added.

CONCLUSION

The announcement widely shared on WhatsApp urging relatives of inmates who have spent three years without trial at the Kano state Command Correctional Centre to send case number and court numbers to a certain phone number for their immediate release is fake. 

CDD, therefore, urges the general public to disregard the announcement.

#StopFakeNews

#StaySafe

Gwamnatin Jahar Legas Bata Wallafa Sunayen Asibitocin Da Masu Dauke Da Cutar Corona Suka Ziyar Ta Ba

By Fact CheckNo Comments

Tushen Magana:

Masu tantance sahihancin labarai na Cibiyar Bunkasa Demokarardiyya Da Cigaba (CDD) a ranar Alhamis, 23 ga watan Afirilun shekara ta 2020 din da ta gabata ne suka gano wata sanarwa da ake yadawa cewa gwamnatin Jahar Legas ta wallafa sunayen wassu cibiyoyin lafiya da sukayi mu’amila da masu dauke da Cutar Corona.

Wannan sanarwa da aka yada ta sosai ta manhajar WhatsApp tana dauke sunayen asibitoci guda goma sha bakwai (17) dake Jahar Legas din.

Gaskiyar Magana:

Binciken da CDD ta aiwatar ya gano cewa gwamnatin jahar Legas bata fitar da kowace sanarwa dake dauke suneyen asibitoci ko cibiyoyin lafiya guda goma sha bakwai ba (17). Hasali ma, a lokacin da yake yiwa yan jarida jawabi a ranar Ladi 19 ga watan Afirilun shekara ta 2020, kwamishinan lafiya na jahar Legas din, Farfesa Akin Abayomi ya bayyana cewa asibitoci goma sha bakwai (17) sun bukaci ma’aikatar lafiyar data tallafa musu sakamakon ziyartar su da masu dauke da Cutar Corona sukayi, amma kwamishinan bai bayyana sunayen asibitocin ba.

Kwanaki kadan bayan jawabin kwamishinan sai wata sanarwa mai dauke da sunayen asibitoci masu zaman kansu guda goma sha bakwai (17) ta fara yaduwa a yanar gizo.

A martanin ta game da sanarwar bogin da aka yada mai dauke sunayen asibitoci masu zaman kansu goma sha bakwai (17) din, gwamnatin Jahar Legas ta bukaci mutane da suyi watsi da sanarwar saboda rashin tushen ta.

Abiola Idowu wanda shine sakatare a ma’aikatar lafiyar ya tabbatar da cewa sanarwar bata fito daga gwamnatin Legas din.

Mr. Idowu ya tabbatar da cewa wassu asibitoci sun bada kulawa ga wassu masu dauke da Cutar Corona. Mr. Idowu yaja hankalin mutane da su guji yada kyama ga asibitoci ko mutanen da suka kamu cutar Corona.

Har wayau a wani jawabi data walafa a shfinta na Twitter, ma’aikatar lafiyar ta jahar Legas ta gargadi asibitoci dama cibiyoyin lafiya a jahar dasu guji karba ko bada kulawa ga masu dauke da cutar COVID-19 ba tare da izini ba. Kamar yadda jawabin ya bayyana, duk wani asibiti ko cibiyar lafiya da aka samu da karya wannan doka zai hadu da hukunci.

Kammalawa:

Gwamnatin jahar Legas bata wallafa sunayen asibitoci goma sha bakwai (17) da sukayi bada kulawa ga masu dauke da cutar Corona ba. CDD tana jan hankalin mutane da suyi nesa da yada labarin da ka’iya haifar fargaba ko tarnaki ga kokarin yakar cutar Corona.

#AdainaYadaLabaranKarya

Cutar Corona: Ma’aikatar Ilimi Ta Kasa Bata Ce Sai Watan Nuwanba 2020 Za’a Bude Makarantu Ba

By Fact CheckNo Comments

Tushen Magana:

A ranar 22 ga watan Afirilun shekara ta 2020 masu tantance sahihancin labarai na Cibiyar Bunkasa Demokaradiyya Da Cigaba (CDD) sukaci karo da wata sanarawa da ake rabawa yan jarida wadda tayi ikirarin cewa ma’aiakatar ilimi ta kasa tace an rufe makaratu a fadin kasa baki daya kuma baza a bude su dan cigaba da karatu ba har sai watan Nuwanban wannan shekarar ta 2020 da ashirin da muke ciki sakamakon annobar cutar Corona da ake fama da ita yanzu haka.

Sanarwar wadda dubban mutane suka ganta mai dauke da kwanan wata 21 ga watan Afirilun shekara ta 2020 an danganta ta ministan ilimi Malam Adamu Adamu da kuma wata sa hannu mai kamar nasa.

Gaskiyar Magana:

A ranar 19 ga watan Maris din shekara ta 2020 ma’aikatar lafiya ta kasa ta bada umarnin rufe dukkan makarantu a fadin Najeriya baki daya sakamakon tabbatar bullar cutar Corona.

Binciken da CDD ta gudanar a shafin yanar gizon ma’aikatar lafiya ta tarayya ya gano cewa ma’aikatar bata fitar da kowace sanarwa dake bada umarnin cewa sai watan Nuwanba a bude makarantu ba.

Sanarwar da aka yada din ta bayyana cewa babban sakatare a ma’aikatar ilimi ta kasa Mr. Sunny Echono shine ya tabbatar wa jairdar Premium Times da ake wallafawa a yanar gizo bude makarantun da za’ayi a watan Nuwanba, amma editan jaridar Idris Akinbajo ya gayawa masu tantance sahihancin labarai na CDD cewa batun bude makarantu a watan Nuwanban magana ce maras tushe kuma aiki ne na wassu bata gari.

Mr. Akinbajo ya kara da cewa wanda suka kirkiri labari bogin sun dauki wani labari makamancin wannan da jaridar Premium Times din ta wallafa a shekarar data gabata sannan suka sauya masa fasali dan cimma bukatar su.

Wata alama ta nuna cewa sanarwar ta bogi itace yadda sanarwa da ake rabawa ga manema labaran ta jinjigina kanta da wata jarida abinda baya faruwa.

Acikin sanarwar an bayyana cewa Adamu Mallam ne ya saka hannu akanta, kuma sunan ministan ilimin Najeriya shine Malam Adamu Adamu.

Lokacin da yake yiwa manema labarai jawabi game da batun ranar 21 ga watan Afirilun shekara ta 2020, karamin ministan ilimi Emrka Nwajiuba yace har yanzu ma’aikatar ilimin bata cimma matsaya ba game da ranar bude makarantun.

Ministan ya cigaba da cewa “daga mun cimma matsaya akan ranar da za’a bude makarantun zamu sanar, kunsan mun rufe makarantun ne a karshen watan Maris saboda barkewar cutar Corona”.

Ministan ya kara da cewa bude makarantun al’amari ne na hadaka da zai shafi dukkan jihohi saboda akwai jihohin da dokar hana fita.

Kammalawa:

Sanarwar da ake yadawa cewa ma’aikatar ilimi ta tarayya zata bude makarantu a atan Nuwanban shekara ta 2020 labari ne na bogi. Ma’aikatar ilimin bata fitar da kowace sanarwa akan bude makarantu ba kawo yanzu. CDD tana kira ga iyaye da dalibai da dukkan jama’a da suyi watsi da wannan sanarwar.

Injiniya Mace Ta Farko A Najeriya Ba Tace Gwamnati Tana Boye Gaskiya Game Da Cutar Corona Ba

By Fact CheckNo Comments

Tushen Magana:

Wani saki dake cigaba da yaduwa a manhajar WhatsApp ya kalubalanci gwamnatin tarayyar Najeriya da boye gaskiya game da cutar Corona a kasar. Wannan sako an danganta shi da injiya mace ta farko a Najeriya wato Mrs. Olu Maduka.

Wassu daga cikin zarge-zargen da aka danganta su da Mrs. Maduka sun hada da cewa da yawa daga cikin masu dauke da cutar Corona suna cikin halin rai-kwakwai mutu-kwakwai dama wani jariri dan wata daya da haihuwa dake dauke da cutar Corona din.

Acikin sakon an bayyana cewa Mrs. Maduka tayi kuka game da halin da wannan jariri yake ciki. Har wayau wannan sako ya bayyana cewa kaso goma daga cikin adadin bullar cutar Corona da gwamnati ke bayyanawa ne kawai gaskiya.

Wannan sako da aka danganta shi da Mrs Maduka ya kara da cewa taga gawawwaki guda takwas (8) acikin awa daya lokacin da takai ziyara asibitin Mainland dake garin Legas.

Gaskiyar Magana:

Acikin wani martani da ta mayar ta hanyar wani faifan bidiyo data nada ta turawa masu tantance sahihancin labari na Cibiyar Bunkasa Demokaradiyya Da Cigaba (CDD), Mrs. Maduka tayi watsi da sakon da aka danganta ta dashi.

Kamar yadda ta zayyana, ta dade tana zaune a gida kafin ma a aiyana dokar zama a gida saboda haka maganar takai ziyara asibitin Mainland bata ma taso ba.

Mrs. Maduka ta bayyana karara cewa: “ina jawo hankalin mutane da cewa bani da alaka da sakon da ake yadawa game dani, bani na rubuta shi ba, bankai ziyara kowane gurin killace mutane ba ko asibitin Mainland ko ko’ina ma, hasali ma na kwashe kusan kimanain sati biyar ba tare da na fita ko ina ba”.

Mrs. Maduka ta cigaba da cewa, “bisa la’akari da shekaru na, ko kafin a kafa dokar hana fita waje bana zuwa ko’ina saboda shekaru na, dan haka banje kowane asibiti ba ko wani wajen killace mutane”.

Mrs. Maduka ta shawarci jama’a das u rika anfani da kafafan sada zumunta na zamani ta hanyoyin da suka kamata su kuma guji aikata abubuwa munana.

A jahar Legas dai ansamu bullar cutar Corona har sau 931, wannan adadi kuma shine mafi yawa tun bayan gano cutar a Najeriya a watan Fabrairun shekara ta 2020.

Gwamnan jahar Legas din, Babajide Sanwo-Olu yana cigaba da bada bayanai akan cutar a kodayaushe dama yunkurin da gwamnatin sa keyi wajen dakile yaduwar cutar a jahar baki daya.

Kammalawa:

Sakon da ake yadawa ta manhajar WhatsApp cewa Mrs. Maduka tace gwamnati na boye gaskiyar lamari game da cutar Corona karye. Ba itace ta rubuta sakon ba kuma bata ziyarci kowane asibiti ko wajen killace mutane ba ballatana ma tayi wani jawabi. CDD tana kira ga jama’a da suyi watsi da sakon tare da daina yadashi dama kirikira ko yada labaran karya.

#AdainaYadaLabaranKarya

Nigeria’s First Female Engineer Never said FG is Hiding Facts About COVID-19 from Citizens

By Fact CheckNo Comments

VERDICT: False

CLAIM: A widely circulated WhatsApp broadcast has accused the Nigerian government of, amongst others, hiding vital facts about the Coronavirus outbreak in the country.

 The broadcast is credited to Nigeria’s first female chartered engineer, Mrs. Olu Maduka.

Among many claims credited to Mrs Maduka is that several COVID-19 patients are on life support, including a one-month-old baby that is struggling to breathe.

In the message, Mrs Maduka is alleged to have noted that the case of the one-month-old baby made her cry.

The viral message also alleged that the figures announced by the Nigerian government are about 10% of the actual number of confirmed COVID-19 cases announced to the public.

It also claimed that the Nigerian Engineer saw eight corpses within one-hour of her visit to the Mainland Hospital in Lagos.

FACT

In the one-minute and thirty seconds video sent in and reviewed by fact-checkers at the Centre for Democracy and Development, the engineer debunked the WhatsApp broadcast.

According to her, she was indoors even before the lockdown was announced and has not gone out in about four weeks, let alone visit the Mainland Hospital in Lagos.

She said in the video: “I wish to state emphatically that I did not write the article being circulated widely under my name as I have not visited any isolation centre either on the mainland or anywhere else. I have been home for about four weeks.”

“Even before the state official lockdown because at my age I belong to the high-risk group. So, there is no way I would have visited an Isolation Centre either on the mainland anywhere else,” the Engineer added.

She also urged members of the public to use social media responsibly and desist from abusing the platforms which can also serve educational purposes.

Lagos state has recorded 931 COVID-19 positive cases – the highest of all states across the country – since the confirmation of Nigeria’s index case in February.

The governor of the state , Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has held regular updates to intimate members of the public on the progress made so far by his administration to curb the spread of the virus in the state.

CONCLUSION

Mrs Maduka, who was conferred with the National Honour of Member of the Federal Republic (MFR) in 2008, did not send the WhatsApp broadcast. She was also never at the Mainland Hospital in Lagos as claimed in the message.

She did not write an article accusing the Nigerian government of concealing the true state of the fight against Coronavirus as being widely circulated in the WhatsApp broadcast.

The CDD urges members of the public to disregard such information and refrain from spreading any form of disinformation across the social media platform.

CORONAVIRUS IN NIGERIA: False Claims to Ignore

By Fact CheckNo Comments

Two months down the confirmation of the index Coronavirus case in Nigeria, the social media has been awash with various claims ranging from preventive to curative measures against the deadly novel virus.

Exploring the trending narratives that have emerged from disinformation in Nigeria, the Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD) has witnessed series of interesting developments including the sharp rise in the number of deaths in Kano, the country’s second-largest city located in the North-West region.

While the situation in Kano state has been marred by poor communication around the COVID-19 response, as well as new regulation designed to target fake news, which unfortunately has the potential to be used to suppress conversations around the disease, this piece will look at some of the significant developments.

Over 200 deaths in a single cemetery in Kano?

Kano state is a  hotbed for misinformation, with a vast appetite for disinformation. On April 22, 2020, fact-checkers at the CDD spotted a 30-second Hausa video posted by Kelsoblog9ja on Facebook claiming that 200 people had been buried in the city of Kano.

The video captioned: “Here is another burial of 200 people in Kano – whom the cause of death is not known”, showed many people moving in and out of a cemetery while a commentator narrated an assumed scenario.

Speaking in Hausa, the speaker said: “Look at how a cemetery looks like a wedding place, seeing dead bodies has become common, forgive us oh God, have mercy on oh God, we repenting oh God!”

Our investigations revealed that contrary to the video circulating, there was no funeral for 200 people in Kano on Wednesday, April 22, 2020.

The closure of the Nigerian Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) office and poor record-keeping complicates matters.  CDD fact-checkers visited different cemeteries to get accurate details of the number of deaths in the State. 

CDD checks showed several interesting phenomena; on the one hand, residents of Kano are generally ambivalent to the danger posed by COVID-19. However, a spate of high profile and ‘strange’ deaths, spurred the production of panic-driven misinformation.

The spike of deaths in Kano also forced the federal government to launch an investigation into the occurrence as the state governor refuted claims of mass burials. It is clear that the unfolding situation in Kano state, is sensitive, and the lack of state capacity and infrastructure, there is a strong likelihood of continued health misinformation in the State.

Please see our fact-check here.

Lagos Government releasing lists of hospitals exposed to COVID-19 cases

On Thursday, April 23, 2020, CDD fact-checkers spotted a statement circulating online alleging that the Lagos State Government had released a list of health facilities in the State exposed to Coronavirus (COVID-19) patients.

The purported list was shared primarily on the WhatsApp medium, which is a massive channel for the distribution of disinformation.

During a briefing held on Sunday, April 19, 2020, the State Commissioner for Health, Professor Akin Abayomi, said that about 17 hospitals in the State have reached out to the Ministry for assistance after being exposed to coronavirus (COVID-19) patients. There was, however, no mention of hospital names by the Minister.

A few days after the announcement by the Lagos State’s health minister, a list of 17 private health facilities in Lagos made its way to online blogs and social media platforms.

Interestingly, the Lagos State Government reacted to the news in a statement on Thursday, April 23, 2020, which urged members of the public to disregard it. Abiola Idowu, the Secretary of Health Facility Monitoring and Accreditation Agency (HEFAMAA), in Lagos, also confirmed that the list did not emanate from the agency or the Ministry of Health.

Please see our fact-check here.

COVID-19: Widespread ‘FG’s Relief Collation Form’ is a Scam

Since President Buhari revealed the existence of relief funds, there has been an explosion in the fraudulent attempts to scam Nigerians into parting with their sensitive details, using the bait of COVID-19 palliatives. This past week has not been different. On Monday, April 20, 2020, CDD fact-checkers received several WhatsApp broadcast messages containing the link to a Google Form with the title ‘Relief Disbursement Collation Form’ for verification by members of the public.

The form which bears the Federal Government of Nigeria had a deadline for Monday, April 20, 2020. The online Google form requested applicants to fill their personal details, including their residential address and bank account numbers.

Following the blow to the economy, millions of Nigerians, many of whom work in the informal sector have been affected by the pandemic and as such for COVID-19 relief from the Federal Government.

These Nigerians have also become susceptible to fraudulent schemes which promise the delivery of relief funds with a dubious plan to extract personal information from unsuspecting members of the public. The scammers use the identity of influential and wealthy individuals and government agencies to lure potential victims.

This is not the first time such claims on possible monetary relief has been made. Between March 25 and 28, 2020, a WhatsApp broadcast message went viral with the claim that the Federal Government was set to pay citizens N8,500 per week to sustain the stay at home directive for the containment of the Coronavirus pandemic. A similar link was created for people to register for the scheme.

In the same week, CDD fact-checked a similar false claim that a former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar, would disburse N10,000 weekly to Nigerians as palliative through the Atiku Foundation. This week, another source had alleged that the former President Olusegun Obasanjo has personally decided to send N5,000 directly to every Nigerians’ account using their BVN.

All these claims which follow the same pattern have turned out to be false.

The rise in popularity of these fraudulent messages led the Special Assistant to President Muhammadu Buhari on Digital & New Media, Tolu Ogunlesi, to caution the public against filling such forms.

Ogunlesi wrote: ‘’This Relief Disbursement Collation Form being circulated is a SCAM. NEVER EVER, under any circumstances, give out your BANKING + PERSONAL details to ANY online ‘data collection’ form. Never. Don’t do it. Don’t even wonder if it’s genuine or not. Just don’t do it!’’.

Read the complete fact-check here.

CONCLUSION

This week has seen how the danger of weak governance structures, as are the case in Kano state, contribute to a burgeoning information crisis, with significant adverse effects.

The erosion of public trust in institutions is not helped by state governors denying the apparent rise in deaths; neither is the evident lack of health expertise which led to several NCDC staff in contracting COVID-19 in Kano, leading to the eventual closure of the office.

This closure had a ripple effect of eliminating the only method of tracking the spread of the virus. So, not only do we have confusing and divisive information coming from the state government, but the lack of testing capacity means it is challenging to build a clear picture of what is happening.

The socio-economic condition of the majority of Nigeria as laid bare is the unfortunate rise in scam messages which also raises inquiries on the actual process of disbursement of the relief funds. The lack of clarity on how the funds are being disbursed contributed to the rise in misinformation.

As we head into the last week of federal lockdown for the states of Lagos, Ogun and FCT, there is less clarity than ever on the actual data on the spread of the disease, and following that, a clear sense of what the road forward will be. Therefore it is only like that along with the virus; disinformation will continue to spread.

Kano Recorded 4 Not 74 New Cases of COVID-19 on April 25, 2020

By Fact CheckNo Comments

CLAIM:

Fact-checkers at the Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD) spotted numerous online reports claiming that Kano state has recorded 74 new cases of Coronavirus (COVID-19)in the state on Saturday, April 25, 2020,

The reports which appeared on online newspapers and across various social media platforms claimed that the Kano state governor, Abdullahi Gandujeduring a press conference announced that the state recorded 74 new positive cases of COVID-19.

According to the reports, Ganduje said that out of 487 samples of the suspected cases taken from the state, 74 turned out positive.

For instance, report by Daily Post Newspaper said Kano has recorded 74 new cases of COVID-19 as several other online newspapers including Ripples Nigeria also reported similar story on Saturday, April 25, 2020.

FACT:

CDDfact checkers investigated the claim and found that contrary to what several newspapers and social media users have reported, only four new cases of Coronavirus were recorded in Kano on Saturday, April 25, 2020.

A confirmation of the investigation was also made by the Nigerian Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) on their website.

The NCDC announced that only four cases turned out positive in the state bringing the number of COVID-19 patients to 77 in the state.

The agency also said that Kano state has recorded only one death from Coronavirus and zero discharges as at 11:55 pm on April 25, 2020.

CONCLUSION: 

The news report being widely shared that the Kano state has on Saturday, April 25, 2020, recorded 74 news cases of COVID-19in the state is false.  The confirmed cases in Kano state as at Saturday, April 25, are four. 

CDD,therefore, urges members of the public to disregard the claim while advising that the authenticity of reports be thoroughly checked before publishing and dissemination.

200 People Were Not Buried in a Single Cemetery in Kano on Wednesday, April 22, 2020

By Fact CheckNo Comments

VERDICT: False

CLAIM:

A 30 seconds Hausa video posted by Kelsoblog9ja on Facebook on April 22, 2020, claimed that 200 people have been buried in the city of Kano.

The report spotted by fact-checkers at the Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD) was captioned: “Here is another burial of 200 people in Kano – whom the cause of death is not known”.

The video showed many people moving in and out of a cemetery while a commentator who spoke in Hausa said: “Look at how a cemetery looks like a wedding place, seeing dead bodies has become common, forgive us oh God, have mercy on oh God, we repenting oh God!”

FACT:

After thorough investigation, CDD fact-checkers found there was no funeral for 200 people in Kano on Wednesday, April 22, 2020, as claimed by the report.

CDD also established that the video failed to justify the claim or answer vital questions like how the people died and which of the cemeteries in Kano they were buried.

Also, having claimed such a huge number of deaths, the report only showed three bars in an open truck which indicates that only three people were buried as against the number being reported.

Checks and inquiries made by CDD fact-checkers revealed that there was no news of such calamity within the Kano metropolis.

As at the time of releasing this fact-check, there has not been any statement from from the Kano State Government, the Police, Ministry of Health in the state.

However, the Assistant Secretary/PRO of Kano State Cemeteries Committee, Alhaji Yusuf Tukur Tarauni debunked the claim.

Tarauni told CDD fact-checkers that: “The news is unbelievable and entirely fake and that even in a big cemetery like Tarauni, between 10-15 people were buried on that day.” He added that the panic created by fake news entrepreneurs is uncalled for.

CONCLUSION

The funeral of 200 people did not take place in a single cemetery in Kano on Wednesday, April 22, 2020. The report which has already gone viral is fake. 

CDD uses this opportunity to caution the general public against peddling fake news.

#stopFakeNews

#StaySafe

COVID-19: Ministry of Education Never Said Schools Will Reopen in November 2020

By Fact CheckNo Comments

CLAIM: On April 22, 2020, fact-checkers at the Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD) spotted a press release stating that the Ministry of Education has ordered the closure of schools nationwide until November 2020 due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

The viral press statement dated April 21, 2020, was credited to the Ministry and had what appeared to be the signature of the Minister of Education, Mallam Adamu.

VERDICT: False

FACT:

On March 19, 2020, the Federal Ministry of Education ordered the closure of schools across Nigeria following the confirmation of COVID-19 cases in the country.

A review of the Ministry’s website by CDD fact-checkers shows that the Ministry published no press release confirming the said directive.

The press release stated that Mr Sunny Echono, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, confirmed the November reopening to Premium Times, an online Nigerian newspaper. The newspaper’s Managing Editor, Idris Akinbajo, told CDD fact-checkers that the statement is the handiwork of some mischief-makers.

Mr Akinbajo said: “Obviously, what they did is that they took a story which we published late last year, [and] manipulated it to drive their mischief.”

Further proof that this is a doctored statement lies in the fact that a government ministry has never quoted a newspaper in such manner in its press release.

Also, the statement is alleged to have been signed by Adamu Mallam. The Minister’s real name is Adamu Adamu.

During a press conference on the April 21, the Minister of State for Education, Emeka Nwajiuba, said the Ministry is yet to arrive at a definite date for schools to reopen.

“As soon as we arrive at a definite time, we will communicate that. We will also be looking at what we will do for schools to reopen. As you will recall, we asked that schools vacate in the late part of March as soon as this broke,” Nwajuba said.

He added that the reopening of schools across the nation would be a coordinated effort among all the states as the lockdown will affect how students are expected to attend classes and how the teachers will resume work.

“So, it goes with that saying that nobody can reopen schools now except we coordinate all of that effort,” he said.

Finally, in a statement refuting the claim, Ben Gong, the director of media in the Ministry, said the purported press release is a clear case of forgery.

CONCLUSION

The claim that the Federal Ministry of Education sent out a press statement stating that schools in Nigeria will reopen in November 2020 is false.

CDD urges parents, students, and the general public to disregard the fake release.