Ghana’s journalism faces threats of disinformation and misinformation
Ms. Joan Agyekum Nsowah, the Programmes Officer for Communication and Information at UNESCO Ghana Commission has observed that disinformation, mal-formation and misinformation were threats to the development of journalism in the country.
She said stakeholders including the Ghana Journalist Association (GJA) and UNESCO were therefore committed to strengthening the capacity of journalists to identify and stop those threats.
Ms. Nsowah made the observation when speaking at a capacity building training workshop for media practitioners on Monday at Techiman in the Bono East Region.
The two-day training organised by the UNESCO Ghana Commission in collaboration with the GJA was attended by 49 selected practitioners including Information Services Department officers from the four municipalities and seven districts in the region.
Focused on counter disinformation, the training aimed at improving the capacity of local media practitioners to produce and report factual and accurate news in order not to mislead society to ensure communities’ development.
It was to enhance earlier training to reach marginalised regions and areas that had been declared hotspots for electoral fraud.
They were taken through topics such as “steps to identify information disorder”, “disinformation” and “tools for fact-checking”.
She said the participants would become familiar with fact-checking and a professional approach to conveying the truth and urged them to make ample use of the opportunity as it would create the ground to improve their professionalism.
Miss Nsowah said it was the responsibility of journalists to feed the society with unbiased news, stressing “you own society a responsibility to provide truth and accurate information and the need to live up to the task is paramount”.
Mr. Larry Paa Kwesi Moses, the GJA Chairman for the Bono, Bono East and Ahafo Regions reminded the participants about the need to be guided by the ethics of the profession and “stand up to fight disinformation” which has become a major threat to the modern journalist.