Vaccine hesitancy is a major threat to our collective health and safety as Covid-19 doesn’t give any clue of abating to vanish. We must continue to fight Covid to end its devastation. Africa faces double trouble struggling to get the vaccines and burst dangerous myths and fake news, scaring some of its people who can’t afford or don’t want to observe the protocols – the easiest, cheapest, yet best protection.
I felt sad listening to health authorities in Ashanti sounding helpless about some residents circulating a fake video to scare people in the ongoing vaccinations. Let me repeat this caution – you can be thrown into jail for simply being a conveyer belt for false information. Yes, you are a candidate for jail for merely passing on that piece of information or video, causing fear and alarm.
You don’t have to be the originator or manufacturer of false or misleading information. Your crime is in simply sharing that panic-inducing false statement, rumour or report without verifying the authenticity. By section 76 of the electronic communications law, that WhatsApp or Facebook post can bring you before a judge for a fine of up to ¢36,000 or up to five years in jail.
If you are lucky to be prosecuted under section 208 of our criminal code, you may get up to three years in prison for your reckless act. To the extent, there is it completely false, and there is no proof that people develop electromagnetic bodies after a jab, police in the region must get to work on this now. Think before you share that message. If you won’t help the Covid-19 fight, just don’t hurt it. That’s your legal light. That’s My Take.