In an interview with the state broadcaster ZBC which is now awash on social media, President Emmerson Mnangagwa warned those who peddle falsehoods about his office.Mnangagwa said the would be culprits, if caught, will be jailed for a maximum of 20 years.
“I have seen that on social media I am supposed to have made a statement to extend the lockdown and that is absolutely nonsense. I have never made that statement,” Mnangagwa said.
This comes at a time the nation is fighting to control the spread of the new omicron variant of Covid-19 which has seen cases spiralling over the past two weeks.
“We have now a law which punishes those who produce fake news and I have asked the CIO (Central Intelligence Organization), the organization he personally started before independence and led soon after independence.The CIO’s have been ordered by the head of state and government and Commander in Chief of the Zimbabwe Defense Forces “To make a trace to who did this one to say the president has made a statement when I have not, so that when we catch this person it must be exemplary and must go in for at least at level 14, which is 20 years imprisonment,” he said.
“That way I think we need to demonstrate that we do not want false news circulated especially when you are telling false news about the president.”
Mnangagwa says he has unleashed his Central Intelligence Organisation (CIO) agents to track down and bring to book people who peddle fake news about him.⊆φ
This also comes after messages circulated on the social media suggesting he had extended the current Covid-19 lockdown, which turned out to be fake.