As the World continue to adjust to the reality and adverse impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic which has ravaged the world, a Plateau State Blogger, Social Media Influencer and the Chief Executive of MTB Multimedia, Matthew Tegha has urged the Citizens to ignore all misinformation concerning the COVID-19 Vaccines.
The ace Blogger made this known as a Guest during a special COVID-19 Vaccine Radio Awareness Programme sponsored by Centre for Information Technology And Development (CITAD) and MacArthur Foundation on KT 103.9 FM Jos, Plateau State while speaking on the topic “how Social Media Influencers can promote COVID-19 Vaccines Uptake”.
According to him, fake news, misinformation and other misgivings have adversely affected the uptake of the vaccines in most developing Countries especially Africa compared to their developed Counterparts who have achieved over 60% Vaccination of their eligible population thereby attaining certain level of health immunity against the virus.
He disclosed that there is need to build strong trust between the government and the citizens in order to achieve wide acceptability and mass uptake of the COVID-19 Vaccines which he said are safe and effective having undergone the various phases of clinical trials, certified by world renowned Health Experts and recommended for use globally by the World Health Organization (WHO), the body responsible for international public health.
He said considering the misinformation obtainable in developing Countries on COVID-19 Pandemic and the vaccines, it is vital for social media Influencers to step in and sensitize the public on account of the critical roles they play in moulding the perceptions of the people.
He said information is key to human existence and the need for the right, accurate and reliable information by Social Media Influencers cannot be overemphasized.
While decrying how misinformation is affecting humanity and exposing people to higher risk, the online Media Expert called on social media Influencer not to relent in their roles of combatting fake news and use the social media platforms effective and for the common good of humanity and the society.
He admonished social media influencers to take time to verify information peddled by key Influencers who have little or no knowledge about certain issues in order to decipher which of these information are right or wrong to save the public from being misinformed on certain pertinent issues which may be detrimental to them.
“The issue of COVID-19 Vaccines in Nigeria is poorly accepted owing to certain misgivings which must be addressed to increase their acceptability”
“Vaccines are not new to humanity, they are useful scientific substances we grew up as children knowing and using”
“There are Countries that have achieved 90% COVID-19 Vaccines intake, it is also possible in Nigeria if the consciousness on the part of the citizens to have better comprehension about the Vaccines” he said.
According to him, the information that the Vaccines contains microchips is false and misleading, therefore the citizens must do away with the conspiracy theories.
He said many have died on account of misinformation.
“We need to change our perception, take the vaccine to get resistance against the virus” he said.
He urged the Citizens to consult their physicians on health issues they are not sure of instead of accepting misinformation hook, line and sinker.