ICIR Collaborates with UNILAG and UNICAL to Combat Misinformation

The International Centre for Investigative Reporting (ICIR) has entered into a strategic collaboration with the University of Lagos (UNILAG) and the University of Calabar (UNICAL) to combat misinformation and enhance media literacy. The partnership includes a two-day training program, held from November 8 to 9, focusing on countering misinformation.

ICIR Collaborates with UNILAG and UNICAL to Combat Misinformation
Group picture with students of the university of Calabar with the ICIR team.

In a proactive move to address the escalating issue of misinformation, the International Centre for Investigative Reporting (ICIR) has entered into a strategic partnership with the University of Lagos (UNILAG) in Lagos state and the University of Calabar (UNICAL) in Cross River state. The collaboration aims to counter misinformation and enhance media literacy among students.

The collaboration materialized in the form of a comprehensive two-day training program held from November 8 to 9 under the banner of the "Countering Misinformation and Promoting Media Literacy" project. The initiative seeks to mitigate the spread and impact of misinformation in Nigeria by fostering media literacy and responsible information-sharing practices among citizens.

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During the training sessions hosted on the campuses of UNILAG and UNICAL, participating students were equipped with a detailed, step-by-step guide on combating false news, identifying phishing websites, and verifying images and videos. Additionally, they received instruction on crafting effective pitches, utilizing open-source intelligence (OSINT) tools, and archiving online claims.

Bamas Victoria, the editor of ICIR, led the team of facilitators, shedding light on the distinctions between misinformation, disinformation, and malinformation. Emphasizing the importance of cross-checking sources cited in reports, Victoria underscored the significance of accuracy and credibility in journalism.

At UNILAG, facilitators included Kemi Busari, Editor of DUBAWA, Kimberly Kures, an author and content creator, and Victoria Bamas. Students expressed gratitude for the eye-opening seminar, recognizing its value in cultivating a discerning approach to information consumption.

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Adepoju Tejumaiye, a professor and the head of UNILAG's Department of Mass Communication, urged students to seize every learning opportunity, highlighting the dynamic nature of the journalism profession.

Professor PAdepoju Tejumaiye

Similar sentiments were echoed at UNICAL, where Associate Professor Stanislaus Iyorzza encouraged students to maximize their learning experiences. Iyorzza noted the richness of the program and expressed confidence that the establishment of a hub at UNICAL would facilitate a "train-the-trainers" approach.

The ICIR team, led by Bamas, paid a courtesy visit to the Vice-Chancellor of UNILAG, Professor Folasade Ogunsola. Professor Ogunsola welcomed the collaboration, acknowledging the prevalence of misinformation in the media space. She underscored the challenges faced by the media, emphasizing the need for improved standards and a commitment to thorough analysis.

The ICR Team during the courtesy visit to the VC UNILAG

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This collaboration is part of a broader initiative by ICIR, as reported earlier on October 30 and November 8, which included partnerships and training sessions at Federal University Lokoja, Hassan Usman Polytechnic, Adekunle Ajasin University, American University of Nigeria (AUN), and Federal University of Kashere. The initiative signifies a collective effort to address the pressing issue of misinformation across educational institutions in Nigeria.