Are Vanguard and Punch Newspapers trying to be funny?

Earlier today, the people at Vanguard and Punch Newspapers, two of the many Newspaper outlets in Nigeria that operate a well-visited web platform, decided that it was completely reasonable to run the following story with these headlines respectively:

The two publishers are no millennials when it comes to selling the news and frankly should be way above this – trying to sell a story with a headline that borders on pure falsehood.

The situation in the country is such that anyone who sees the headline will immediately think of President Muhammadu Buhari even though the story clearly has nothing to do with him. It’s a worse version of last August’s media debacle with “The Man who named his dog Buhari”.

According to the stories run by each of the Newspapers, the toddler who had been abused by his step-mother last June has just undergone his first corrective surgery at the Federal Medical Centre in Bida, Niger State. And this is good news.

Except that these two (who knows if there are others) have just tried to turn the story into an avenue to increase click rates.

But isn’t this a case of click baiting gone too far?

Or maybe it’s just another case of a President that has lent himself to cruel headlines from his own country’s press; Trump style.

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