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Supermarket social media warning ‘malicious’

| Crime and security

The health department has warned the public of a false statement making the rounds on social media which advises South African citizens ‘not to buy or eat from supermarkets in Durban, Johannesburg and Pretoria’.

In a statement released by the health ministry, it is said that the statement which has been circulating more particularly on WhatsApp since Wednesday afternoon was “untrue, malicious, and diabolic”.

Spokesperson of the Department of Health, Joe Maila said the statement was designed to cause “unnecessary panic to the public”.

“We want to state clearly that there was never such warning posted on our website. There are procedures in place to ensure that information placed on our website is accurate and verified by authorised officials of the department. Matters of such public health magnitude are not dealt with simply by releasing a press statement. The Ministry of Health would have convened a media conference to thoroughly inform the public about the risk,” said Maila.

“The Ministry of Health urges the public to ignore the statement. The public must be assured that it is the responsibility of the Department to inform the public about any potential risk to their health.”

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