The Department of State Services (DSS) has arrested Kabiru Mohammed, a Kano State indigene, for allegedly creating and sharing fake videos depicting a wedding ceremony between President Muhammadu Buhari and Minister of Humanitarian Affairs and Social Development, Sadiya Farouq.
Mohammed, 32, had reportedly released the video which sparked a frenzy across the nation in October.
Peter Afunanya, DSS spokesman, yesterday confirmed the arrest of the suspect, saying he is at the DSS headquarters. He said an investigation was launched, following a formal complaint to the service by the Minister of Finance, Zainab Ahmed, whom the video also showed as getting married to the President.
“Last year, between August and October, there was a defamatory video that circulated widely across Nigeria and showing false engagement of Mr. President in marriage with some members of his cabinet.
“One was the Minister for Finance, Hajiya Zainab Ahmed and another was that of the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs and Social Development, Hajiya Sadiya Farouq.” Afunanya said.
“On the 11th of October, 2019, the Honourable Minister for Finance, brought a formal complaint to the service in which she stated that the video had cost her big embarrassment and asked that an investigation be opened into that audio/video and the materials associated with it, the infographics and all the materials that were in circulation at the moment.
“She asked that a detailed investigation be opened in that regard with a view to identifying the persons or groups of persons that may have been behind the circulation of such defamatory materials.
“The service went into investigation and we can announce that it had apprehended the person that is involved and the person who started this and who circulated the materials. His name is Kabiru Mohammed. He hails from Kano. He is 32 years. He holds a diploma in Hausa and Fulfulde from the Federal College of Education, Kano and also holds a diploma in Mass Communication from Aminu Kano Islamic School.”
Afunanya warned members of the public to avoid circulating misleading information, highlighting the negative effects of fake news. “We want to use this opportunity to once again please ask Nigerians as always that the spread of false news through social media does not do well for any person.
“You may enjoy the spread of such falsehood when you are not the victim. But if you become the victim, you will know the pain. And we want to urge every citizen and residents and of course Nigerians, that anywhere they are, they should desist from spreading falsehood, misrepresentations, rumours against one another, against the government, and against institutions of government.
“By the time you click that button and you spread or participate in sharing news that is not true, you are helping in causing disharmony, you are helping in bringing problem in the country. And you are also feeding on differences in the country to bring about chaos, anarchy and instability.
“On our part, we would continue to perform our duties and responsibilities without let or fear and will always collaborate with all stakeholders particularly the media and strategic partners to make sure there is lasting peace in the country.”