By Musa Sunusi Ahmad
AFARI Travel and Tour partnered with UNESCO through its Regional Bureau Abuja on Sensitization on Dis- and Mis-information on COVID-19 in the region.
The sensitization is through a “CALL FOR JINGLES AGAINST DIS AND MIS-INFORMATION ON COVID-19” with submissions open between 10 May to 5:00 PM 25 May 2020 GMT+1. This call is open to all the residents aged between 18 and 35 years in the non-Sahel region of West Africa (namely, Benin Republic, Cote d’Ivoire, Ghana, Guinea, Liberia, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, and Togo).
Dis- and mis-information on COVID-19 is already indeed prolific in media landscape, which threatens not only individuals but also societies as a whole. It results in citizens endangering themselves by ignoring scientific advice, amplifies distrust in policymakers and governments, as well as diverts journalists’ efforts towards reactive disproving of falsehoods instead of proactive reporting of new information.
Hence, this call for jingles/short videos aims to:
1-Encourage young women and men to identify dis- and mis-information on COVID-19 through monitoring and fact-checking of various sources of information;
2-Leverage on innovation and creativity of young people to make appropriate response to the dis- and mis-information on COVID-19;
3-Sharpen the critical thinking antennae of the general public for relevant information on COVID-19, focusing on the media and information literacy enhancement and the competences regarding empathy, critical inquiry and compassion under health emergency.