The Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, has tasked broadcasters to leverage the power of television to combat the myths and alternative facts that have dogged the campaign against the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, noting that only factual information from credible sources can help in combating the pandemic.
The governor, in a statement, in commemoration of World Television Day marked by the United Nations (UN), said it was imperative for media outlets to leverage the credibility of their media to push out factual information in a world that is battling with the adverse effect of fake news and misinformation.
According to him, “As we mark the World Television Day, it is important for media outfits who have, over time, made sacrifices in protecting and preserving truth and building credibility to collaborate with relevant stakeholders in pushing the right information to the public so as to combat myths and misinformation that may go viral through social media channels and other unverifiable sources. It is important to deploy the power of educational broadcasting in passing across the correct information to the public.
“As we battle the adverse effects of the coronavirus pandemic, it has become apparent that relying on the social media to disseminate factual information may not be the right way to go. We are at the verge of a second wave of the pandemic, which calls for caution and tact in disseminating information about the pandemic.”
The governor urged all stakeholders to work with television stations and other media establishments in ensuring the authenticity of information passed to the public, so as to avoid the harsh effects of fake news that came with the first wave of the pandemic.
According to the United Nations (UN), “Television continues to be the single largest source of video consumption. Though screen sizes have changed, and people create, post, stream and consume content on different platforms, the number of households with television sets around the world continues to rise. The interaction between emerging and traditional forms of broadcast creates a great opportunity to raise awareness about the important issues facing our communities and our planet.”