UK Sanctions Chris Oyakhilome’s TV Station over Unsubstantiated 5G / Covid-19 Conspiracy Theory Claims
Popular Nigerian televangelist, Chris oyakhilome, had claimed restrictions were imposed in two Nigerian cities by the government using Covid-19 as a cover-up to enable the installation of 5G networks
The regulator said while it does not oppose broadcasts airing controversial views or those challenging health authorities, the claims in a sermon aired by Christian channel Loveworld News calling the pandemic a “global cover-up” posed serious health consequences to viewers.
Oyakhilome is his sermon aired on Loveworld TV claimed that Coronavirus was a hoax used by government to install 5G network in two cities in Nigeria.
The preacher claims came after the Nigerian government imposed restrictions in Lagos and Abuja cities after the virus spread rapidly in these locations in the early days of the outbreak in the densely populated West African country.
Nigerian government denied the pastor’s claim that the government imposed movement restrictions in its two cities to allow the installation of the new generation wireless technology 5G.
In another broadcast, Oyakhilome clarified his stance on the 5G conspiracy saying he was worried by the health risks associated with the technology.
Oyakhilome presides over one of the largest Christian congregations in Africa and the church boasts of having branches in countries and university campuses across five continents.
Ofcom said another report during the broadcast touted hydroxychloroquine as a cure for coronavirus leaving out doubts about the efficacy of the drug and potentially harmful side effects.
“However, given the unsubstantiated claims in both these programmes were not sufficiently put into context, they risked undermining viewers’ trust in official health advice, with potentially serious consequences for public health,” Ofcom said.