A few weeks ago the President announced that a law was being put into effect that would allow for the sentencing of those spreading false information regarding the Coronavirus.
The President has spoken again, following speculation that he would announce an extension to the current lockdown. Mnangagwa claims there is no such declaration being made as the Cabinet will review whether an extension is necessary towards the end of the current lockdown.
Mnangagwa also announced that the Government will try and trace whoever originated this misinformation and give them an exemplary sentence to defer others from spreading false information;
I have seen on social media people saying that I’m going to make a statement extending [the lockdown]. That is absolutely nonsense, I never made such a statement.
We now have a law, which punishes those who produce fake news and I believe we have asked the CIO to make a trace as to who made the claims that “the President has made an extension” when I have not. If we catch that person, it must be exemplary and they must go in [prison] at level 14 – which is 20 years imprisonment.
I think we need to demonstrate that we don’t want false news to be circulated especially when you are spreading false news about the President. That is not proper!
Regarding the lockdown, the President went on to say the Cabinet will sit down and review whether or not to extend it on the 20th or 21st day of the lockdown which suggests we will be getting an official address either on Sunday 19 April or on the following day which marks 21 days.