By: Vivian Imoh
KADUNA, North-West, Nigeria – A Non-Governmental Organization, (NGO), Generations for Peace, (GFP), on Thursday said that fake and inciting news is a societal dilemma in building peace and coexistence in the country.
Participants in the Arts and Advocacy for Peace Programme off GFP observed during a community engagement with sixty media practitioners to address fake and inciting news among the diverse groups in Kaduna state and Nigeria at large.
They noted that a state like Kaduna with a long history of religious and ethnic conflicts, had despite the efforts of the media in mobilizing, informing, educating and enlightening the people towards ensuring harmonious relationship, the social media is not helping matters.
Speaking at the event, Assistant Admin Officer, GFP Kaduna office, Ms. Jelilat Abidoye said that the media engagement is to identify the root causes of fake news and how to curb it’s dissemination as well as take strategic actions in curbing the ugly trend.
“Fake and inciting news is also a major societal dilemma in building peace and coexistence,” Abidoye noted.
She explained that the NGO has implemented programmes in and around the state by working with children, youth, adults and women, pointing out that over the years three programmes have created impact in communities through innovative and carefully designed programmes in sports, empowerment, dialogue, and now arts and advocacy by creating safe platforms for interactions and engagements between people from diverse ethnic and religious groups who have been experiencing conflicts.
“It is our utmost hope that at the end of this engagement, together, we will be able to identify the causes of fake news, how to curb the dissemination of fake news.
“The support of the United States, Abuja have intensified efforts to bring social inclusion, understanding and tolerance to communities experiencing conflict among the diverse ethnic groups and two major religions: Christianity and Islam with the aim of helping transform these conflicts and build sustainable peace for future generations,” she said.
The Participants with media practitioners had a focus group discussion in which they came up with a campaign strategy against fake news
The programme tagged: “United In Diversity” Phase II, using tools like Arts and Advocacy for Peace Building in Kaduna state is supported by Embassy of the United States of America, (USEM), Abuja.