APIA, SAMOA – 07 APRIL 2020: The Office of the Regulator has disputed any links between the Coronavirus and 5G Technology as “the false claims” have gone viral on social media and widely shared by locals who have added their own speculations.
The post that links to someone who claimed to have worked for Vodafone in the UK that the coronavirus has direct links to 5G technology widely deployed overseas in 2019.
At least 20 mobile phone masts across the UK are reported to have been torched or otherwise vandalized since last week according to government and industry sources who are increasingly concerned about the impact of baseless theories linking coronavirus to 5G networks.
Samoa’s Acting Regulator said in a statement this afternoon “to date, there is no authentic link between COVID-19 and 5G technology and that 5G technology has not been launched in Samoa and therefore there are no equipment in operation.”
The impact of these posts have resulted in telecommunications facilities in overseas countries being damaged by those influenced by these online posts and videos.
“Because of the fake news that have been circulated about 5G and its connection to COVD-19, we are witnessing in other countries people are destroying critical infrastructure that keeps them connected,” said Acting Regulator.
“It is important that we as a nation understand that there is 5Gthreat so that we do not resort to destroying critical infrastructure as this time of difficulty an when it’s mostly needed.”
The Acting Regulator said 5G technology is expected to increase performance and a wide range of new applications including the strengthening of e-Health (telemedicine), remote surveillance, and telesurgery in Samoa.
The Regulator also reminds it is an offence under the Telecommunications Act to damage any telecommunications network or related telecommunications facility and anyone found breaking the law will be dealt with accordingly.