INEC boss, Yakubu highlights danger of hate speech to electoral process

Date:

Dec 7,2023.

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Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, Prof Mahmood Yakubu, has highlighted the danger of hate speech to the electoral process.

Yakubu, represented by the Acting Director, Voter Education and Publicity, spoke at the iVerify project launch organised by the international Press Centre in Abuja on Monday.

The INEC boss noted that hate speech is a threat to social peace and poses significant danger to the electoral process with the potential to incite divisiveness, bigotry and erode the principle of democracy and equality.

He said that some of the key dangers of hate speech to the electoral process include, but are not limited to:

“Undermines democratic values. It undermines the core principles of democracy such as respect for human rights, equality and fair treatment to all individuals, using inflammatory languages to target individuals based on their race, religion, ethnicity, gender and other characteristics. Hate speech can perpetrate discrimination and exclusion, contradicting the fundamental value of democratic society.

“Disrupts social cohesion. It can fuel social division and exaggerate tension within communities.

Incite violence and intolerance. Hate speech has the potential to incite violence and discrimination against targeted groups. It can provoke hostility and aggression, leading to acts of harassment and intimidation and even physical violence in the context of the electoral process. This can disrupt the peaceful conduct of elections.

“Undermines political dicsourse. It can shift attention away from substantive discuss and policies and;

“Undermine trust in the institution. The proliferation of hate speech in the electoral process can erode public trust in democratic institutions, including the electoral system, political leadership and the media.”

Speaking earlier, Lanre Arogundade, Executive Director of International Press Centre (IPC), harped on the need to strengthen the fight against the disturbing phenomenon of information disorder exemplified by rising disinformation, misinformation, mal-information and hate speech, especially in the electoral and democratic processes.

To achieve this, he said there is a need for capacity building for journalists on fact-checking of electoral information and the democratic processes; the need to promote media literacy and engagement in public enlightenment and

Collaboration to strengthen advocacy for the enabling environment for credible information dissemination.

He said the emphasis has been that journalists should be detectives of disinformation and should regularly arm themselves with fact-checking tools, insisting that making use of fact-checking methods in the gathering and dissemination of electoral information and setting aside their political biases or partisan prejudices could enable the reporter to present to the public what is factual and not the opinionated ones in their heads.

“The effort at curbing disinformation will not bring about the desired result if the concept of media literacy is not fully embraced as a way of educating journalists, other media professionals and the public,” he added.(www.naija247news.com)

 

Peter Okafor
Peter Okaforhttp://Naija247news.com
Peter Okafor Financial Journalist | Editor | Contributor Overview: Peter Okafor is a seasoned Financial Journalist, astute Editor, and valued Contributor at Naija247news Media Group. With an unwavering passion for dissecting complex financial landscapes, Peter has become a trusted name in delivering incisive and insightful coverage of economic events, market trends, and corporate dynamics. Professional Journey Peter's journey in financial journalism has been marked by a commitment to excellence. Joining the ranks of Naija247news, he has consistently demonstrated a keen understanding of the intricate interplay between finance and the global socio-economic fabric. Expertise: Specializing in financial markets, economic analyses, and business developments, Peter Okafor has honed his expertise over the years. His ability to unravel intricate financial narratives and present them in a comprehensible manner sets him apart in the world of financial journalism. Contributions As an Editor and Contributor, Peter has played a pivotal role in shaping the narrative of Naija247news. His contributions extend to thought-provoking articles, in-depth market analyses, and coverage of key events that impact the financial landscape. Educational Background: Peter holds a degree in Journalism, complemented by specialized courses in Finance and Business Reporting. His educational foundation has provided him with the tools to navigate the intricate world of financial journalism. Innovation and Adaptability: In an era of evolving media landscapes, Peter Okafor exemplifies innovation and adaptability. Leveraging digital platforms and emerging technologies, he ensures that financial insights reach a diverse audience, fostering financial literacy and awareness. Awards and Recognition: Peter's commitment to journalistic excellence has not gone unnoticed. He has been the recipient of several awards, recognizing his outstanding contributions to the field of financial journalism. Vision for the Future: Looking ahead, Peter Okafor envisions a future where financial journalism continues to empower individuals, shape economic policies, and drive positive change. His dedication to staying at the forefront of financial news underscores his commitment to this vision. Connect with Peter Okafor: - LinkedIn: [Peter Okafor](#) - Twitter: [@PeterOkafor_N247](#) In the dynamic realm of financial journalism, Peter Okafor stands as a stalwart, combining experience, expertise, and a forward-looking vision to illuminate the path of financial understanding for a global audience.

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