Claim: A statement, which has gone viral on Facebook and other social media platforms, has a claim that Lai Mohammed, Nigeria’s minister of information, said the government increased fuel and diesel prices so as to reduce accidents and traffic on Nigerian roads.
DUBAWA’s checks on previous statements made by Mr Mohammed on price increase of fuel and diesel showed the minister did not make such statements attributed to him. His spokesperson also debunked
Since the start of the year, many parts of Nigeria have been experiencing fuel scarcity and increase in the price of fuel across the country, leading to an increase in price recently.
Oil marketers reportedly increased the price of Premium Motor Spirit(PMS), following approval by the Nigerian National Petroleum(NNPC) Limited for an upward review in the pump price from N165 per litre to N179 per litre.
Following the increase in fuel price and diesel price, social media users have started circulating a statement attributed to the Minister of Information saying that the price was increased so as to reduce traffic and accidents on Nigerian roads.
The statement being circulated reads: “We raised fuel price to 200 Naira and Diesel to 800 Naira to reduce the number of traffic and accidents in Nigeria–Lai.”
DUBAWA observed that many of the social media users who commented on the post attacked the information minister for purportedly making such a comment.
Because of the controversies that have trailed the statement, DUBAWA decided to check its authenticity so as to put the argument of whether the minister said it to rest.
A close look at the statement attributed to the information minister shows that there was no mention of the date the minister purportedly made the statement.
Several checks on previous statements made by Mohammed on the increase of fuel price led DUBAWA to a report by Vanguard published on 16th May 2016. Going through the report, DUBAWA observed that the minister did not make such a statement attributed to him.
Also, an online review of credible media platforms showed that there was no such reportage.
When DUBAWA contacted Segun Adeyemi, spokesperson of the information minister, he said his principal did not make such a statement.
Adeyemi said, “It is totally fake, please disregard it.”
The statement attributed to Lai Mohammed, claiming the government increased fuel and diesel prices to reduce accidents and traffic on Nigerian roads is false. DUBAWA’s checks on previous statements made by Mr Mohammed on price increase of fuel and diesel showed the minister did not make such statements attributed to him. The spokesperson of the information minister also said the statement does not emanate from Mr Mohammed.