The federal government has rejected the unverified security alert recently issued on Nigeria by certain embassies in the country.
Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, condemned the act on Tuesday in Abuja at a ministerial panel of the on-going UNESCO Media and Information Literacy Week.
The minister also lampooned the Nigerian media outlets and social media personalities for spreading the security alerts without verifying its authenticity and consequences.
In his presentation, Mohammed said the warning issued by the embassies, which was not the true position of the security situation in the country, could create unnecessary tension and panic.
“Some media outlets and social media personalities are usually caught spreading unverified information on their platforms just for click bait and the attendant monetary gain.
“Talking of click bait, this may be what informed the spread of the supposed security alert issued recently by some foreign embassies in Nigeria.
“One would imagine that if indeed this kind of security alert was issued, it was for the attention of citizens of the issuing countries in Nigeria.
“Suddenly, this alert found its way into the media, both new and traditional, thus creating panic in the polity.
“Schools were shut. Businesses were closed. Travel plans were altered. Lives were disrupted. No one cared to find out about the authenticity of these alerts.
“They just published, got the benefit of massive click bait and damned the consequences,’’ he said.
He reiterated his position that the country “is safer today than at any time in recent times’’, with the efforts and sacrifices of the military.
The minister said the security forces had been proactive and as far as insecurity is concerned, the worst is over for Nigeria.
“We do not discountenance the fact that terrorists, bandits and their kind would always want to do whatever it takes to disrupt our nation’s peace, security and stability.
“Well, I can assure all that our military and other security agencies have continued to do everything possible to secure and protect Nigerians and foreigners living in Nigeria.