Suspected pranksters who caused a panic and disruption of services in a General Hospital in Abuja over Coronavirus are to face the full brunt of the law, government and Police officers have promised.
The men Peggy Shandi, Abayomi Adedoyin, David Gold Enemigin, Jacob Oki, and a lady, Priscilla Ajesola claimed to be playing out a script about the virus without the knowledge or authorisation of the relevant authorities of the Federal Capital Territory Authority (FCTA).
But the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Department of Public Health has reiterated that there is no confirmed case of Coronavirus in the FCT and advised residents to remain calm.
According to a statement by the FCTA, Director of Public Health, Dr Josephine Okechukwu, restated the position following the arrest and parading of the alleged pranksters who went to the Wuse District Hospital claiming that one of them had been infected by the Coronavirus.
Dr Okechukwu said that the FCT and indeed the country was free of the coronavirus as there is no confirmed case of the disease anywhere in Nigeria.
She said that the action of the alleged pranksters was very wrong as it was capable of creating pandemonium especially in a hospital environment where the action took place. She said that if such false information was released on the social media, it would do great damage not just to the FCT but the country at large
While parading the suspects at the Wuse Zone 3 Divisional Police Station, the FCT Force PRO DSP Anjuguri Manza said that the suspects claimed to be playing out a script about the virus without the knowledge or authorisation of the relevant authorities of the FCTA.
The PRO said that investigations into the activities of the suspects were ongoing.
The Special Assistant to the FCT Minister on Media, Malam Sani Abubakar said that the FCT Administration had taken steps to ensure that all contagious diseases were well contained within the FCT.
He described the actions of the suspects as appalling as it disrupted the normal health service delivery process in the hospital and was capable of spreading fear and panic across the FCT and beyond. He called on members of the public to remain calm.
He insisted that if found guilty of a crime, the full weight of the law should be brought to bear on the suspects to serve as a deterrent to others who might want to tow a similar line.
One of the suspects Peggy Shandi said that their action was merely a prank about the coronavirus.
The FCT Police Command is still investigating the case and on conclusion, the suspects will be arraigned court.