The Sports Writers Association of Nigeria, (SWAN), Kogi state Chapter has described as fake and malicious the news credited to one Qozeem Oladapo of Team Ekiti that over 40 athletes and 20 officials from Kogi State tested positive to the Covid-19.
In a statement signed by Kogi State SWAN chairman,Bishop Aturu on Tuesday, the association fumed that the said publications was sponsored by some disgruntled elements to discredit the stand of Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State on Covid-19 pandemic.
Oladapo from Ekiti media team while giving an update on the ongoing National Sports Festival in Edo State had circulated this information on some social media platform that “On the Covid19 situation, none of Ekiti state athletes not official tested positive for the disease while reports from the camp of Kogi state say over forty athletes and twenty officials from the states have tested positive for covid-19 and have since been asked to return home”
But Aturu in the statement explained that the Kogi State contingents who arrived Benin on the 3rd of April 2021 was subjected to rigorous and stressful Covid-19 test which lasted for several hours.
According to him, the test at the end of the day all came negative with news available in the entire reputable online and conventional news platform in the country.
The Kogi State SWAN chairman however urged the writer (Qozeem Oladapo of Team Ekiti) to do a rejoinder on the said story, apologize to Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State and the entire media team for the fake news targeted towards denting the image of entire confluence state contingents.
The statement which was titled
‘SWAN kicks against Qozeem Oladapo of Team Ekiti NSF Media false news about Kogi contingent’ reads in parts” The Sports Writers Association of Nigeria, (SWAN), Kogi Chapter attention has being drawn to an unconfirmed, malicious and indicting publication by one Qozeem Oladapo of Team Ekiti National Sports Festival, (NSF) Media on team Kogi saying over 40 athletes and 20 officials from Kogi States have tested positive for covid-19 and have since been asked to return home.
“It is on record that the Kogi contingents who arrived Benin on the 3rd of April 2021 was subjected to rigorous and stressful Covid-19 test which lasted for several hours. The test at the end of the day all came negative with news available in the entire reputable online and conventional news platform in the country.
“We understand that Kogi State because of its able and dynamic governor Alhaji Yahaya Bello’s stand to the compliance of covid-19 has further made the state a target by many as so many efforts has been carried out to ridicule and proof the governor wrong.
“It’s however disappointing that a fellow so-called colleague who by all standard should be professional, ethically trained and well informed on the effect of fake news joined others to propagate unconfirmed news which facts are all over for verification.
“We also want to make it known to Qozeem that if by any means his action is sponsored by some disgruntled individuals or group to discredit the efforts of Governor Yahaya Bello on his stand against Covid-19 pandemic, such move should be abated as it will amount to a total disgrace to his career as a journalist.
“To set the record straight Qozeem Oladapo, Kogi State participated in 49kg light flyweight boxing category against Borno State on Monday at Oba Akensua Cultural Centre here in Benin. Can any athlete sent back home participate in boxing? This further confirmed that your report is not only a fake but a calculated attempt towards denting the image of Kogi State in the ongoing National Sports Festival.
“As against this backdrop, we, Kogi SWAN are requesting the following;
That Qozeem Oladapo makes known the source of his story from the camp of Kogi state.
“Why he didn’t verify his story, knowing fully well that there are sports journalists from the state available at the festival.
“Apologize to the Kogi State government, the state contingent and also the SWAN members of the state for making us feel unprofessional in the discharge of our duty, as against earlier report by mainstream media that all Kogi Athletes and officials tested negative.
“Makes a rejoinder as against what he has earlier published, ensuring it goes viral to counter what he has earlier posted. With an ultimatum of 48 hours, which failure to do so will attract legal action”.Share this on WhatsApp