Yesterday, Tuesday 17th of March, the Writers’ Association of the Gambia (WAG) held a press conference at the National Council for Arts and Culture to share with the public steps they will be taking to contribute to the sensitization drive about the deadly coronavirus.

As it has been shown amply that the world has not found a way of curing this virus or producing a vaccine, the focus has shifted to sensitization. It is now necessary to make efforts to ensure that as many people as possible get the message about the virus and the preventive measures recommended by the World Health Organisation (WHO) and the Ministry of Health.

This most important work cannot be left in the hands of government alone and every citizen should do his/her part to ensure that the citizens are given the necessary information to protect themselves from this scourge.

This need is made even more pertinent by the fact that there is anoverabundance of fake news about the pandemic and many people are going around spreading false news about it. Many are using it as a way of spreading panic and causing a lot of anxiety among the populace.

There are others who are using it to show their spiritual prowess claiming that x, y or z can prevent one from contracting the deadly virus. They announce these and give the gullible false hope which may turn out to be even worse than having the virus itself.

Yet, there are those who see it as a business opportunity, selling all sorts of herbs and powder to say that it can cure coronavirus and as a result many people are rushing to buy.

These are desperate times and desperate times require desperate measures to counter them. The Government of the Gambia should pay particular attention to the people who are spreading these fake news and ensure that citizens receive the right information in order to protect themselves and their families.

All citizens should follow on the footsteps of the Writers’ Association of the Gambia and work to make sure that all the people of the country have the information they need to be safe.

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