When news that Eritrea government had enacted a law forcing men to marry two women or face imprisonment, East African men went wild, they all wanted to be in Eritrea.
However, the government has responded, the news was a hoax. “The media frenzy to parrot this ludicrous, fabricated and trite story… is appalling,” “Eritrea’s Information Minister Yemane Gebremeskel tweeted.
“the story illustrates [the] vileness of the dark forces of disinformation and proclivity of others to readily embrace the negative narrative on Eritrea,” Yemane Gebremeskel added.
“Even a madman in [the Eritrean capital] Asmara would know that this story was not true,” an Eritrean official told the BBC.
The story was first published by a Kenyan news site called Crazy Monday, affiliated to the Standard newspaper.
The site reported that men were required to marry two women due to acute shortage of men occasioned by casualties during the civil war with Ethiopia.
It reported that “First that every man shall marry at least two women and the man who refuses to do so shall be subjected to life imprisonment with hard labour,” and “The woman who tries to prevent her husband from marrying another wife shall be punished to life imprisonment.”
May 1998 to June 2000 Eritrean-Ethiopian war saw 150,000 soldiers killed from either sides but having a bigger impact on male population in the tiny Eritrea nation who were then just 4million people in total.