Fake news alert

Fake news alert: Schools not closed until 2021 due to COVID-19

Despite many calls to stop the spread of fake news during the coronavirus pandemic, it is still continuing at an alarming rate.

by Andrea Chothia 2020-03-25 16:47 in Offbeat

Fake news is something we just can’t seem to get rid of, especially during the coronavirus pandemic. Despite numerous calls by President Cyril Ramaphosa and Health Minister Zweli Mkhize for the spread of fake news to desist — it doesn’t seem to be letting up. In the latest spurt of fake news, a false statement, from the “Pretoria Marking Centre” has been making its rounds. The “statement” was sent out to the media on Wednesday 25 March by Gauteng Education spokesperson Steve Mabona — where he warned that it was fake news. 

Here’s what the fake news statement says  

The “statement” says that schools will not reopen on 14 April, as stipulated, due to the rapid increase of coronavirus. It then goes on to say that the “department” will be informing schools that the opening date might be pushed back to 10 September — which is a Thursday — and quite an odd day for schools to reopen. That’s not all — it also said that schools may only resume in 2021. “If cases in South Africa do not decrease, schools will resume again in 2021 and all students will repeat the same class they started this year.” Mabona took to writing the word “fake” over it to alert the media.