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Dubawa Ghana’s recent fact-checking engagements

5 mins read A bi-weekly newsletter that takes a closer look at the significance of truth and falsehood in today’s news stories.

5 mins read

It has been well over a month since we last let our readers in on our engagements, but we are back to give you a peek into some projects we were involved with while we were away. As duty demands, we have persisted with the fight against misinformation and have increased our capacity and reach – extending this duty to potential and current journalists in Ghana and across the West-African sub-region, by providing them with hands-on training on fact-checking, and equipping them with the necessary skills and tools for it. 

In the past month, Dubawa Ghana has facilitated two major fact-checking projects – the Campus fact-checking project and the Kwame Karikari fact-checking and research fellowship – and both projects are underway.

The maiden Campus fact-checking project launched with a three-day training workshop for 20 journalism and liberal arts students across seven tertiary institutions in Ghana. The project is inspired by the need to address some of the ethical lapses identified in journalism practice by offering students in tertiary schools aspiring to take up roles in the ecosystem the opportunity to acquire real-world experience in the journalism profession through verification and fact-checking.

As they readily demonstrated during the training, the students have an unflinching committedness and enthusiasm to counter misinformation and amplify truth and are deliberating on other ways to promote the culture of fact-checking on their campuses. 

Dubawa Ghana team and the maiden cohort of the Campus Fact-Checking project

Similarly, the 2021 Kwame Karikari Fact-checking and Research fellowship has commenced with 26 fact-checking fellows and 17 researchers and post-doctoral fellows from Nigeria, Ghana, Sierra Leone, the Gambia and Liberia after a two-week long in-person and virtual training programme

Named after Professor Kwame Karikari, redoubtable media freedom advocate and founder and former executive director of the Media Foundation for West Africa (MFWA), the Fellowship is also inspired by the need to tackle and curb the rapid spread of mis- and dis-information and further expand the art and reach of verified and accurate information to rural and urban societies, to institutionalize a culture of fact-checking across the globe, and to build knowledge around the menace of information disorder in Africa.

The Dubawa team and some fact-checking fellows 

Latest Fact-checks

President Akufo Addo fact-checked on Ghana’s corruption ranking claim

Ghana’s president, Akufo-Addo in an interview with CNN’s Zain Asher, stated that since his party took over government, Ghana’s corruption ranking in the world has, in his words  “gone up several notches”. However, according to the Corruption Perception Index (the world’s most trusted metric for assessing perceived levels of public sector corruption) report published between 2012 and 2020, Ghana has not risen significantly in terms of perceptions of lower corruption. 

This viral image is not of 100km Ghana/Burkina Faso railway line

A viral image of a railway line has circulated on Facebook with captions purporting that it is the 100km railway project linking Ghana to Burkina Faso, which the Government of Ghana through the Ministry of Railway Development announced in 2019 to have secured a loan to construct. However, this claim was found to be false. 

Fact-check: Ghana is not the second largest producer of cassava in Africa

News reports, which have since been updated, stated that “Ghana is the second largest producer of cassava in Africa – a claim made by Banda Abdallah Khalifah, the Head of Trade in Services and Manufactures at the Ghana Export Promotion Authority, during a conference on financial and technological support for processing cassava in Kumasi in May 2021.  However, Dubawa found that instead, Ghana is currently the third largest producer not the second. This was confirmed by the claimant in our conversation with him as he further clarified that the claim was based on data from 2017 and 2018. 

Viral image purported to be Accra-Kumasi highway false

A Facebook user has claimed that the construction and completion of the Accra-Kumasi highway by the Akufo-Addo government. However, findings reveal that the photo making the claim showing the completed roadwork is a highway in Brazil, not Ghana.

More fact-checks here

  1. Did the president of the World Bank tell the Akufo-Addo government to stop borrowing and fix the country? 
  2. Viral video suggesting kidnapped Ghanaian children have been found in Benin is false 
  3. Fact-check: Accra has not recorded a cholera case since 2017
  4. Fact-check: Yet to be completed Volivo bridge project not a Mahama-legacy
  5. False, celebrities have not endorsed a money investing scheme suggesting 100 return in 15 minutes
  6. The Epic 99:1 India-Ghana football match that never was
  7. Chicago teen did not sleep with bullies mothers to assert dominance
  8. A John Mahama or Akufo Addo legacy: The facts about the Tema-Akosombo railway line project
  9. False: R Kelly has not been released from prison
  10. Ayarigas claims on Akufo Addo receiving malaria-vaccination instead of Covid-19 vaccination & others false
  11. All you need to know about Ho-Fume road project
  12. False, Ghana did not place 6th in the 2021 most corrupt countries ranking
  13. Insufficient evidence to back viral video of Burkinabes illegally migrating to Ghana
  14. Doctor of Medical Laboratory Science (ML.S.D)  programme offered at the UDS is accredited by the National Accreditation Board

Explainers and Media Literacy Articles 

  1. World Malaria Day: Nearly 750 children under age 5 die of malaria daily 
  2. Covid-19: Thinking of getting vaccinated? Here are a few things to know 
  3. Pokuase Interchange: Settling the Akufo-Addo-John Mahama legacy confusion
  4. How many trucks did President Akufo-Addo really unveil?
  5. Covid-19 Vaccination: Timing, number of doses required for full protection  
  6. World Day against Child Labour: Progress against child labour stalls for the first time in two decades
  7. Five key facts you need to know about the right to information law in Ghana
  8. Is the IGP’s directive to the Association of Bankers to provide fortified armoured vehicles for carting currencies by the close of June 2021 feasible

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Engage with us and our work. For feedback, suggestions, and claims you want fact-checked, feel free to contact us. 

Website: ghana.dubawa.org

Twitter: @dubawaGH

Facebook: Dubawa

Whatsapp: +233 542 818 189

Instagram: @Dubawa_Official

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Maxine Gloria Danso is a Senior Researcher with Dubawa Ghana. Maxine has previously worked as a Research Assistant engaging in some notable communication research projects in Ghana, having completed a Master of Philosophy programme in Communication Studies at the University of Ghana, with specialisation in journalism, public relations and advertising. She also holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and French from the University of Ghana, with a University Diploma in French Studies from Université Rennes 2 in France. Maxine contributes to the team by drawing from her knowledge and research experience in media studies.

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