Nigerian govt charges monarchs to change mindset, stop misinformation about COVID-19 vaccine
The Federal Government of Nigeria has called on monarchs and other traditional rulers in the country to change their negative psyche and stop the misinformation about the COVID-19 vaccine.
Boss Mustapha, the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, (SGF), made the call on Thursday during a sensitisation programme on COVID – 19 vaccines for Muslim scholars and Imams in Nigeria.
Mustapha, who was reacting to comments made by the Sultan of Sokoto, Sa’ad Abubakar, who said that the administration of COVID-19 vaccine should not be by force; advised that traditional and religious leaders should change the negative psyche in their subjects.
He said; “I believe that we cannot force people to take vaccine. There are myths, people talk of conspiracy theory. The vaccine is meant to kill us; there are so many videos circulating, very negative videos… “The vaccines are free; we are not paying for the vaccine, it is your choice to take the vaccine.
“A lot of misinformation about COVID – 19 is currently being circulated through various mass and traditional channels. Traditional leaders, who are custodians of the people’s culture and values, must be very discerning to guide our people aright. Please endeavour to verify any information that you cannot link to any credible source.
“This virus is no respecter of persons. It has affected every group of persons in our society, including the traditional institution. This is why we must come together as one people with one voice to use our influence to promote both the non-pharmaceutical preventive measures and vaccination.
“Traditional rulers are highly revered in our society; it is important that we leverage on this divine influence to instill in our people the sense of taking responsibility for themselves and their loved ones by wearing facemasks, observing hand hygiene, physical distancing avoiding large gatherings and unnecessary travels,” Mustapha added.