Malawi ICT body partners Facebook to fight fake news

Information and Communication Technologies Association of Malawi (Ictam) has partnered with Facebook to creat an  information centre on coronavirus (Covid-19) to curb fake news and misinformation.

Bram Fudzulani, ICTAM president

Ictam president, Bram Fudzulani said on Tuesday the information centre would help Facebook users in getting all the right information and timely updates on Covid-19 from trusted sources.

He said the partnership with Facebook on Covid-19 Information Centre comes after noticing some fake social media campaign and messages on Facebook and WhatsApp.

According to Fudzulani, such messages have, to some extent, caused panic in the public.

“The Covid-19 Information Centre is featured at the top of News Feed that provides a central place for people to keep informed about the coronavirus.

“It will act as a single source of truth on all official communications from the Ministry of Health and other partners like COVID-19 Data Surveillance, World Health Organisation as well as helpful articles, videos and posts about social distancing and preventing the spread of the virus,” he added.

Fudzulani, therefore, urged Malawians to utilise the opportunity provided to avoid spreading false news on COVID-19 in the country.

“There is need for Malawians to utilise the information centre on coronavirus so that they should not be cheated once they come across fake news.

“In doing this, they will be able to prevent and tell others the truth about Covid-19,” Fudzulani said.

The Information Centre forms part of Facebook’s effort to help in the global fight against COVID-19 by providing people with latest news and information from trusted health authorities as well as resources and tips to stay healthy and support their family and community.

Meanwhile, more than 17 countries across the sub-Saharan Africa have coronavirus information centre on Facebook.

Some of the countries include: Democratic Republic of Congo, Nigeria, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Côte d’Ivoire, Ethiopia, Kenya and Mali.

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