The Ghana Commission for UNESCO has partnered with DUBAWA Ghana and the Ghana Institute of Journalism (GIJ) for a two-day training of journalists on information disorder. The training was to increase media awareness on the subject and teach journalists ways to mitigate its effects. The training held on Thursday the 25th and Friday the 26th of April 2022, in a seminar room at GIJ, North Dzorwulu campus, had 20 broadcast journalists from Radio XYZ, Radio Latenu, Radio Wisconsin, Radio Univers, Radio GIJ, Top Radio, Rainbow Radio, Accra FM, Class FM, and Radio UNIIQ attending.
Three facilitators, Caroline Anipah, DUBAWA Ghana’s team Lead; Roselena Ahiable, DUBAWA Ghana’s Programme Officer; and Zakaria Tanko, a GIJ media law and ethics lecturer and legal practitioner, conducted the workshop from 9am to 4 pm on each of the two days. The training focused on the information disorder ecosystem, the practice of fact-checking and its research process, digital verification tools, social media hacks for identifying mis/disinformation, ethics and laws governing the fact-checking practice, and how to use the Right to Information (RTI) law for the fact-checking process.
Caroline Anipah, in acknowledging the outcome of the partnership, stated that information disorder has existed from the inception of humanity but the advent of the Internet has made its impact even more dangerous and necessary to be curtailed.
“We are happy to have partnered with the Ghana Commission for UNESCO to build the capacity of participants. We look forward to more of such collaborations. We hope that the participants’ enthusiasm will reflect in their work, and they will apply the skills and knowledge gained,” she added.
Roselena Ahiable also emphasised the importance of the training.
“It is clear that training is needed across the industry. This is because, during the training, we observed that the availability of information such as the existence of the RTI and the free and easy access to basic verification tools did not mean that all journalists knew how to use them,” she said.
At the end of the two-day training, the Secretary-General of the Ghana Commission for UNESCO, Ama Serwah Nerquaye-Tetteh, awarded all the trainees a certificate of participation. She also highlighted the theme of the training, “Capacity building for journalists on fact-checking and effective use of social media” as she admonished the trainees to utilise the knowledge received from the training.
“Every journalist present has a distinct role essential to our common objective of achieving zero speed or less spread of fake news. We at the Ghana Commission for UNESCO and our key partners thought of organising this workshop specifically to enhance and develop journalists’ capacity in producing and reporting factual and correct news,” Nerquaye-Tetteh said.
Like all facilitators of the training, she was emphatic that journalists are critical players in the global fight against information disorder.