Ghana’s Minister of Information, Kojo Nkrumah, will Tuesday, February 25, at the Accra Swiss Spirit Alisa Hotel give the keynote address at the country launch of Dubawa, the transnational fact-checking organisation, according to a statement by Caroline Anipah, country editor and programme lead for the Premium Times Centre Investigative Journalism (PTCIJ), promoters of the initiative.
Mr Nkrumah will speak on the theme of Accuracy in Reporting and the Making of Sound Public Policy at the event where the Chairperson of the National Commission for Civic Education, Josephine Nkrumah, will be the chairperson.
Ms Anipah recalled that “Over the years, especially with the advent of the internet and social media, Ghanaians have been bombarded with information often laden with untruths and propaganda aimed at influencing them to act,” adding, “this has damaging implications on journalistic processes, democracy, good governance and the general wellbeing of Ghanaians.”
She said these challenges are what DUBAWA aims to help resolve through “rigorous fact-checking exercises and through training.”
DUBAWA is a non-partisan verification and rating platform designed to help renew West African journalism through the promotion of professionalism and the culture of factual public debates that leads to the amplification of truth and accuracy in reporting.
Commenting, Ms Anipah said “Dubawa is not just a verification platform; it is also a repository of tools and resources that can be used by media professionals and the general public to verify information and produce fact-based reports.”
DUBAWA is one of the three internationally accredited fact-checking platforms in Africa and currently has offices in Nigeria and Ghana. It is a member of the International Fact-checking Network.
The Ghana country operation has three respected journalism leaders in the country on its advisory board: Professor Kwame Karikari; Professor Audrey Gadzepko; and Nana Gyan-Apenteng, former chairman of the National Media Commission.
The launch is expected to draw representatives from government, civil society organisations, the media, diplomatic agencies and political parties, according to Ms Anipah who also said “the launch will be followed by a three-day fact-checking training for a cross-section of editors and reporters from selected media houses across the country.”
Participants will be taken through sessions on fact-checking methodology, data interpretation and how to use multimedia verification tools for fact-checking.
Ms Anipah said the training will take start on Wednesday 26 February to Friday 28 February, and “follows in the objective of Dubawa to ensuring fact-checking becomes a norm in newsrooms.”