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Fake news and disinformation threatening elections in Nigeria – INEC

Fake news and disinformation threatening elections in Nigeria – INEC

Fake news and disinformation threatening elections in Nigeria - INEC

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has said that fake news and misinformation are threatening elections across the country.

The national commissioner and member of the Information and Voter Education Committee of the Commission, Prof Kunle Ajayi, disclosed this while speaking at a two-day capacity-building workshop for members of the INEC Press Corps.

According to Ajayi, elections-related disinformation has become a major strategy used by nefarious individuals and groups in the political space to manipulate the general public to their advantage, regardless of the consequential effect such propaganda may have on the peace and stability of the electoral process and the country at large

“I would like at this juncture, to draw the attention of the media to a crucial issue that poses a serious threat to the election process in Nigeria. That is the issue of fake news. The Commission’s distasteful experience with fake news in the 2023 General Elections has shown that, if not nipped in the bud, fake news can become the bane of election management in Nigeria.

The alarming prevalence of misinformation, ‘fake news’, hate speech, and the weaponization of disinformation has become very worrisome to the Commission.

Disinformation is used to provoke religious, political, and tribal sentiments in an already polarized society such as ours, especially, during election season, which is often the leading cause of electoral violence and uprisings.

Election-related disinformation has become a major strategy used by nefarious individuals and groups in the political space to manipulate the general public to their advantage, regardless of the consequential effect such propaganda may have on the peace and stability of the electoral process and the country at large.”

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