Programme Officer and Editor of Dubawa Ghana, Caroline Anipah, has encouraged media houses to establish fact-checking desks in their newsrooms to reduce information disorders in the society.
According to her, journalists must endeavour to institute the culture of fact-checking in their duties, despite the financial constraints they may encounter.
In this era, when technology and digital tools are frequently being used to harm people, Caroline Anipah wants media practitioners “to ensure that people get access to relevant information in order [for them] to make informed decisions and really get to know the truth.”
She was speaking in an exclusive interview with UniversNews on Monday, May 10, 2021, on the sidelines of a 3-day fact-checking training program in Accra.
“We want journalists to be exposed to fact-checking, equip them with skills, build their capacities…and we are encouraging them to build fact-checking desks in their newsrooms.
“Sometimes, I think it’s difficult because of the financial constraints they are going through but as much as possible, we encourage them to set up [fact-checking] desks,” she said.
Why organize fact-checking training for student journalists?
Caroline Anipah highlighted that there is the need for student journalists to receive hands-on experiences while in school.
“Dubawa can’t just leave [student journalists] to be taught in school without any practical experience before they go out into the world…
“We need to pay attention to them, make sure that they have all the skills, if not all, the relevant ones, before they go out to practise,” she explained.
She, however, commended some communication and journalism institutions for exposing their students to practical lessons, even during their stay in school.
Dubawa Campus Fact-checking Project
The Dubawa Campus Fact-checking Project seeks to bring together students from all tertiary institutions in Ghana and give them practical experiences pertaining to journalism and fact-checking.
Caroline Anipah scored that the project will help to bridge the gap between the teaching of journalism and the practice of journalism.
“Over the years, we’ve recognized that students do not have access to practise the profession before they get into the career.
This, sometimes, gives rise to a lot of ethical lapses because they don’t know what they are really doing until they get into the job,” she noted.
She further added that the project will help to create a network of reporters from all tertiary institutions and also help them to fully understand the ecosystem in which they work.
Caroline Anipah also hinted of plans by Dubawa Ghana to host a website for all its campus reporters.
“We are expecting that at the end of the day, they would begin to use the skills they [have been] exposed to in their campus radios, [and their campus] newspapers,” she was hopeful.
Story by: Christian Yalley | universnewsroom.com