'It's fake!' Department dismisses circular claiming schools to shut due to coronavirus
As the coronavirus infections continue to climb, so have the swirls of fake news.
In one of the latest incidents, the education ministry dismissed as “fake news” a circular stating government schools will be shut down from Monday due to the coronavirus.
The bogus statement reads that the schools will be shut down for a month as the coronavirus infections are expected to increase by 45%.
The document contained the signature of the director-general of the education department, Hubert Mweli.
However, Mweli has urged all education departments to ignore the circular.
Please note that this document is not genuine. It has my signature but it is a fake document. Please ignore it,” Mweli said via his Twitter page.
FAKE NEWS ALERT: please note that this document is not genuine. It has my signature but it is a fake document. Please ignore it. @Lesufi @DBE_SA @DBE_KZN @MECTateMakgoe @NCape_Education @EducationGP @ECDOEZA @WCED_HOD @WCEDnews @ElijahMhlanga pic.twitter.com/w5aFrWu4If— Hubert Mathanzima Mweli (@HubertMweli) March 15, 2020
Some schools have announced temporary shutdowns after their pupils, teachers or parents of pupils were said to have either been exposed to someone with the virus or tested positive themselves.
However, only one child, a 14-year-old girl from the Western Cape has thus far tested positive for the virus.