Ebonyi State Governor, Dave Umahi, yesterday said publishers of fake news are now answerable in the state. This was as the Governor said the era of people dishing out falsehood in any form to the members of the public was over, saying anyone found guilty must face law of the state against the act.
The governor spoke against the backdrop of the arrest and detention of a popular former Programme Presenter and social critic, Godffery Chikwere by the police. Chikwere, who was arrested by the police following a petition against him by the state government over a post on his social media handle which the government claimed was against the recently signed law against cybercrime, was to be arraigned before the court but fell sick in the police custody.
He is, however, presently at the Emergency Unit of the Alex Ekwueme Federal University Teaching Hospital, Abakaliki (AE-FUTHA), where he is undergoing medical attention under tight security with visitors and sympathisers barred from visiting him. Umahi, who denied having a hand in the arrest of the Public Affairs Analyst, said he must face the law and accused him of inciting the people of the state against the Army through his post on his Facebook handle.
The governor said: “I didn’t arrest Baby Mouth. I didn’t arrest him. It is important to note now that we have a law on fake news. My journalists and aides should note that fake news coming from anybody is answerable and there is nothing wrong about this development. “The Federal Government have their own cybercrime law and until we deploy this, our society will continue to go bad.”