Africa Check, an international fact-checking platform, in collaboration with the United Nations Democracy Fund (UNDEF), hosted a two-day fact-checking masterclass training for Journalists and Editors.
The training which was held at Amber Residence GRA-Ikeja, Lagos State, centered on enlightening journalists and media workers on how to fact-check claims. The training also engaged participants on how to access and use fact-checking tools.
In his session, a Community researcher with Africa Check and one of the facilitators, Allwell Okapi, enlightened journalists on general tips to determine facts and opinion.
Similarly, the Africa Check Nigeria Deputy Editor, Motunrayo Joel, noted that clickbait is been used to draw people to false content. She noted that fact-checking is mainly to subedit and verify claims adding that social media is one of the fastest mediums where false news are been shared.
In the same vein, a fact-checker with Africa Check, Seyi Awojulugbe during her session also explained the common tools used in fact-checking.
The Nigeria editor for Africa Check, David Ajikobi gave the difference between misinformation, disinformation, and what Infodermics meant.
In an interview with the Managing Editor of ROUNDCHECK who was also a participant, Ikulajolu Adesola, said the training served as an eye opener to the essence of fact-checking. He added that the training would assist his journalism career.
“Some of the tools learned and the techniques of fact-checking will be helpful even as a young editor, it will help to understand how best to examine fact-check reports,” Ikulajolu said.
He further stated that the training was a great opportunity for ROUNDCHECK and other young fact-checkers who were seeking ways to improve their reports.
“The training has created a network of young fact-checkers, positioned with ethics and methods of writing fact-checks and ready to combat misinformation,” he added.
Ikulajolu expressed disappointment over journalists that still spread fake news in their reports.
He commended Africa Check for their consistent training for journalists on fact-checking.
The Executive Director of ROUNDCHECK, Caleb Ijioma revealed that Africa check training was “in-depth and insightful as journalists must integrate fact-checking into their reports to curtail the possible spread of false information.”
“This training is important to team members present at the training because we believe the knowledge gathered will be used to effectively combat false information through our reports. We are always open to training and resources that would help us effectively achieve our objective, which is to reduce the spread of false information and to educate the public on the dangers that lie in spreading it,” Ijioma stated.
Ijioma maintained that ROUNDCHECK as a youth-led organization with a growing network of youths would engage youths and the public generally going forward with knowledge and skills gathered during the training.
He highlighted that “Africa Check is at the forefront of combating false information. Africa Check is doing great work, and it’s highly commendable and people should learn to always check claims and information before sharing them.”
Present at the training were journalists from broadcast, print, and digital media.