The Prime Minister of South Africa denies the existence of the Omicron variant.
A screenshot of a tweet allegedly sent by South Africa's Prime Minister, in which he denies the existence of the Omicron variant and calls it "lies," is circulating on social media. Users shared the claim, expressing outrage at being misled about South Africa's discovery of the latest COVID-19 variant.
The claim is false because South Africa does not have a Prime Minister. The executive authority is made up of a national cabinet, with the president as the head of state, followed by a deputy president and their ministers. On the other hand, South Africa's President, Cyril Ramaphosa himself, tweeted a picture of the Omicron variant to his verified account, which you can see below.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) confirmed the discovery of Omicron, classifying it as a Variant of Concern.
The circulating tweet was first tweeted by Jamnandasgodan, an account with a profile picture of South Africa's Minister of Public Enterprises, Pravin Jamnadas Gordhan. His bio reads, “Prime Minister of the Republic of South Africa.
According to the Misbar team's findings, the claim is false; South Africa does not have a prime minister. The President announced the discovery of the Omicron variant, which has since spread to more than 50 countries.