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Hosting UNESCO Confab Will Boost Campaign Against Fake News, Misinformation – Minister

The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, has said the 2022 Global Media and Information Literacy (GMIL) Week, which

Nigeria is due to host in Abuja from Oct. 24th to 31st, will give a boost to the Government’s ongoing campaign against fake news, misinformation and hate speech.

The Minister stated this in Abuja on Friday when he inaugurated the 25-member Local Organizing Committee (LOC) for the event

”Hosting the 2022 GMIL will go a long way to address the growing trend of fake news, misinformation and hate speech, thus enhancing the campaign we launched in 2018 against these practices,” he said.

Alhaji Mohammed said the decision to give Nigeria the hosting right is a testament to the fact that the country is a known strong advocate of Media and Information Literacy (MIL).

”In 2013, Nigeria successfully hosted the First Global Forum for Partnership on MIL, tagged Abuja 2013. This Forum gave birth to the UNESCO MIL Alliance as well as other initiatives, as part of our collective desire to achieve the Media and Information Literacy for all and by all. Nigeria’s contributions towards the birth and the growth of MIL, especially in the West African Sub-Region, played a large role in UNESCO’s decision to offer our country the right to host this event,” he said.

The Minister charged the LOC members, who are drawn from the public and private sectors, academia, media and civil society, among others, to use their wealth of experience to organize a successful event, saying nothing less is expected from such a high-calibre committee.

”Since we agreed to host the 11th edition of the Global Media and Information Literacy Week, we have been working with the UNESCO Secretariat, UNESCO Regional Office, Abuja and other stakeholders to host the world to a befitting and memorable event. A critical aspect of this preparation is the choice of the theme and the development of the Concept Note. Permit me to inform you that both have successfully been concluded.

”Accordingly, the theme of this year’s Global Media and Information Literacy, which has been duly approved by UNESCO, is: ‘Nurturing Trust: A Media and Information Literacy Imperative.’ The theme highlights how Media and Information Literacy (MIL) helps with nurturing trust and countering mistrust,” he said.

Alhaji Mohammed, who used the occasion to unveil the MIL Week Logo, said the 2022 GMIL will witness participants from the over 193 UNESCO member countries attending both physically and virtually.

He said the LOC will be assisted by nine sub-committees: Venue and Accommodation; Finance; Sponsorship and Marketing; Media and Publicity; Protocol and Security; Transport and Logistics; Entertainment and Ceremonial; Technical and Mobilization as well as Secretariat.

The Minister thanked President Muhammadu Buhari for graciously approving the hosting of the event and also for accepting to declare open the High-level session, while also commending Nigeria’s Permanent Delegate to UNESCO, Dr. Hajio Sani; the Assistant Director General, Communication and Information, UNESCO Headquarters, Dr. Tawfik Jelassi, and the Ministry’s team for their efforts to ensure a successful GMIL.

The LOC will be chaired by the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, while the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Dr. Adaora Ifeoma Anyawutaku, will serve as the Vice Chair.

Members include representatives of the Ministers of Communication and Digital Economy; Education as well as Foreign Affairs;
Ambassador/Permanent Delegate to UNESCO, Dr. Hajo Sani; Acting Regional Director, UNESCO Regional Office, Abuja; The Special Assistants to the President, Office of the Minister of Information and Culture, Mr. Segun Adeyemi and Mr. Williams Adeleye; Director Overseeing Public Communication and National Orientation in the Federal Ministry of Information and Culture (FMIC), Mr Sunday Baba;
Director, Finance and Accounts, FMIC, Dr. Kayode Musbau and Director-General, Advertising Practitioners Council of Nigeria, Dr. Olalekan Fadolapo.

Others are Directors-General of the Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria and the National Broadcasting Commission, Dr. Mansur Liman and Mr. Balarabe Shehu Ilelah respectively; Acting DG of NTA, Mr. Salihu Dembos;
National Librarian/CEO, National Library of Nigeria, Prof. Chinwe Victoria Anunobi; Secretary General, NATCOM UNESCO, Mr. Idowu Olagunju;
Representatives of the Comptroller General, Nigeria Custom Service, Comptroller General, Nigeria Immigration Service, Association of Advertising Agencies of Nigeria and Association of Licensed Telecoms Operators of Nigeria; Executive Director, African Center for Media and Information (AFRICMIL), representing Civil Society, Dr. Chidoh Onumah; Senior Lecturer, Department of Mass Communication,
University of Lagos, Dr. Suraj Olunifesi; Secretary, Media and Information Literacy Coalition of Nigeria, representing the Youth, Mr.
David Osaghe and the Assistant Director (Bilateral/UNESCO), FMIC, Mr. Ifeanyi Okereke,

Segun Adeyemi
Special Assistant to the President (Media)
Office of the Minister of Information and Culture
5 Aug. 2022


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