Nigerian government worries over dissemination of fake news


The Minister of Information and National Orientation, Alhaji Mohammed Idris, has called on media practitioners to take the lead in sanitising the media space to curb fake news in the country.

He stated this when the Country Representative of UNESCO, Mr Abdurrahman Diallo, paid him a courtesy visit.

This is contained in a statement by Suleiman Haruna, the Deputy Director of Press in the Ministry, on Wednesday in Abuja.

The minister noted that the media have to self-regulate their space rather than the government doing so, which might be misinterpreted as oppression.

“With each fake news, online media loses credibility more. I want to commend UNESCO for being at the forefront of fighting misinformation and disinformation and for its effort to develop global standards for regulating social media. This is important because countries can domesticate it and won’t be seen as gagging the press,” Idris said.

The minister also called for the promotion of community radio as part of the inclusive society mandate of UNESCO.

According to him, this will bridge the information gap, as citizens will have avenues for expression and feedback.

On the newly approved Category 2 International Institute of Information and Media Literacy, Idris commended UNESCO and called for support towards its establishment.

He thanked UNESCO for approving a Nigeria office and called on them to continue to use the country as an expert hub for the Africa Region

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