DUBAWA is set to train newsrooms in West Africa on digital journalism, verification, and fact-checking skills in Nigeria, Ghana, Sierra Leone, Liberia, and The Gambia.
Supported by the Google News Initiative and in partnership with the Centre for Journalism Innovation and Development (CJID), DUBAWA aims to positively impact democracy, media performance, media trust, and media sustainability through this capacity-building effort.
The first phase of the training project was launched in Nigeria in February, in three states of the Federation; Rivers state, Kano state, and the Federal Capital Territory, before the country’s general elections. Over 100 journalists across the three states in Nigeria were trained on digital verification and fact-checking skills.
Subsequent training sessions are scheduled in Ghana, Sierra Leone, Liberia, and The Gambia between April and June 2023, where journalists in the said countries can apply for the training opportunity.
The two-day non-residential boot camp will have three sessions daily, including practical and breakout sessions, with approximately 100 journalists in each country.
Kemi Busari, DUBAWA Nigeria editor, who facilitated sessions in Nigeria prior to the country’s general elections, believes the training was timely in curbing the spread of false information.
“With digital disruption and other variables, the information ecosystem keeps throwing up challenges, one of which is mis- and disinformation. As journalists, we face different kinds of false information that require updated skills daily. This intervention by DUBAWA is meant to help journalists with the necessary skills to report facts, verify claims, and, consequently, sanitise the information ecosystem. We are grateful to Google for providing such an opportunity at this crucial time,” Busari said.
Nathan Gadugah, DUBAWA Ghana editor, also believes that with the upcoming elections in other countries, training journalists will improve the quality of reports they produce.
“In an era of mis and disinformation, acquiring the skills and competencies in identifying and combating information disorder is easily the biggest investment any journalist could make. I am happy that through DUBAWA, our fellow journalists will be trained on verification and how to use key fact-checking tools to complement their work,” Gadugah said.
This project, supported by the Google News Initiative, helps DUBAWA to fulfil its mandate of improving journalism practice across West Africa.
Verification and Media Literacy Practice