Uganda: Bunyoro Urges Journalists to Carry Out Intensive Fact Checking Before Publishing Information

The Prime Minister of Bunyoro Kingdom (Omuhikirwa) Andrew Byakutaga, has urged the media to stop disseminating fake news or misleading information which he said has been detrimental to the progress of the kingdom and the country at large.

He noted that there has been a very big challenge of spreading fake information, questioning the motive which he said has negatively impacted the lives of many people in the country.

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“I don’t know why it is exciting to spread fake information. Do you know how much time it takes to try to sieve the right or fake information? We need to improve in providing the right information. Some people announce people dead and in their next post they so and so has finally died,” he said.

He made the remarks while speaking to the Nile Post shortly after an engagement with 30 journalists from several media houses in the country who had paid a courtesy visit to the kingdom.

The journalists have been undergoing five-day multimedia and digital skills training in Hoima, an initiative organised by Ultimate Media Consult and US Mission in Uganda.

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Byakutaga urged the media to carry out intensive fact checking before publishing to avoid misleading the public.

Byakutaga called for a partnership between the kingdom and media houses around the country, adding that having a strategic partnership with the media is very key especially in promoting the kingdom and improving the lives of people.

“We cannot do all this much without getting into partnership. We have realized for Bunyoro Kitara Kingdom to become prosperous and great in 30 years, the quality of lives of our people must be improved. Our mandate is to promote and preserve culture but if the quality of life of our people is not improved, we will not be able to achieve that, “he said.

Byakutaga explained that despite the kingdom having a rich history, the media, because of its reach, can play a critical role in educating and informing the people of the news which can transform their lives.

US Mission in Uganda spokesperson, Tonny Kujawa urged the journalists to embrace new digital tools to further their profession through filing multimedia stories.

“For the past three years, the US Mission in Uganda has supported Ultimate Media Consult to build the capacity of Ugandan journalists, journalism lecturers and students to reach Uganda audiences in new ways,” he said.

Gerald Businge, the team leader at Ultimate Media Consult, urged journalists to apply the skills they have learnt during the training and develop their talents beyond normal reporting of news and become impactful to the community.

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