By Hassan Zaggi
A Non Governmental Organisation (NGO)- Save Humanity Advocacy Centre (SHAC), operating in the north east, has raised the alarm that some agents of Boko Haram have taken to spreading fake news in order to endanger their lives and discourage humanitarian work in the region.
SHAC in a statement signed by its Director of Communications, Lawrence Audu, expressed dismay over the circulation of the fake news by yet to be identified agents of Boko Haram.
The fake news peddlers, the group said, are alleging that elements of the Boko Haram terrorists are still active and hoisting their flags in some parts of the country
“We want to make it abundantly clear that these are enemies of the state who are working with Boko Haram agents to discourage humanitarian efforts geared towards the relocation of former Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in the Northeast back to their communities to start a new life.
“This is capable of putting the life of humanitarian workers in danger and thwarting efforts at relocating internally displaced persons back home,” the statement noted.
The group therefore urged Nigerians to, “disregard such heinous and unbridled stories being churned out by desperate political entities to discourage the Federal Government and the Nigerian people about seeing to the final end of Boko Haram.
“For the records, the Nigerian Military has won the war and no Jupiter can reverse the successes achieved even if they are happy or not. Efforts are ongoing and credible humanitarian organisations have continued to work with the IDPs of which many have returned home.
“For the avoidance of doubts, that information is not true and remains a figment of the imagination of those merchants of death and profiteers of crisis who have vowed to see to the destabilisation of this country.”
The group therefore, called on Nigerians to always verify the sources of their information before rebroadcasting, because, according to them, statistics show that fake news and rumours have been largely responsible for the escalation of crisis in most parts of the country.
“Nigerians must be aware that one major component of terror is information flow. Terrorists like ISIS, Boko Haram, Al Shabab and their collaborators create dreadful images to instill fear followed by hate which travels like wild fire.
“Since negative news appeals more to the human senses, they are shared without proper verification to its authenticity.
“Nigerians must desist from such acts since it helps the author achieve their aims very cheaply while those sharing achieve nothing but a society divided against itself along ethnic and religious lines.
“The circle of negative news broadcast has taken an all time devastating effect on the society with a division on ethnicity and religion expanding in an unimaginable proportion. Authors paint a graphic picture of anti Christian crusade and Fulani supremacy using the current mass killings, also emboldening the Boko Haram terrorists thorough similar propaganda,” the group said.