I did not contract Covid-19 – Lai Mohammed

I did not contract Covid-19 - Information Minister Alhaji Lai Mohammed

The minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, has described as untrue reports that he has contracted the Covid-19 virus and that he is now in isolation, where he is receiving treatment.

The Minister said he does not have Covid-19 neither is he in isolation nor receiving treatment anywhere.


The report according to a statement by his special assistant media, Segun Adeyemi, was first published by an online newspaper and then latched on to by some mainstream media.

He added that the report once again highlights the uphill task the nation faces in the campaign to stamp out fake news and misinformation.


A journalism mantra says ‘when in doubt, leave it out’. Also embedded in the code of ethics for journalists are the basic principles of truthfulness and accuracy, among others.

The report in question according to him did not meet those standards.


The Minister was at the Federal Executive Council meeting on Wednesday, an extraordinary FEC meeting on Thursday and also witnessed the swearing-in of the Minister of State for Works and Housing on

All these events took place at the Villa, where the correspondents of many media organizations are deployed.


In fact, the Minister coordinated the post-FEC press briefing on Wednesday and Thursday.

He asked “Could he have done this from the imaginary isolation centre where he was consigned by a mischievous reporter?


As a member of the Presidential Steering Committee on Covid-19, the Minister has the added responsibility of leading by example, hence would not have hesitated to publicly announce his Covid-19 status if indeed he has contracted the virus.

After all, he is not only fully vaccinated, he has also taken the booster shot, a situation that offers him different layers of protection even if he contracts the


For those who contract the virus, they deserve our empathy and prayers, not stigmatization.

The media does itself a great disservice by making ‘exclusive news’ out of beer parlor gist.


Sooner or later, the truth will come out and a fake-news-peddling-organization will have its credibility dented for

In the best tradition of journalism, we expect the online newspaper behind this fake news not only to retract the publication but also to
apologize to the Minister for causing him such embarrassment, especially in a season of joy.


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