Welcoming remarks were received by Mr Graham Hopwood, director at the IPPR, who stated that the Namibian Fact Check website will be the 189thfact check website globally and reiterated the importance of clarifying statements made by the Political parties as this is the year of elections. Often the political parties make claims without the relevant evidence or having done insufficient research on the facts surrounding a topic. Hopwood also mentioned that it is important to know the intention of the fact checker, as some fact checkers may be bias as they have the objective to promote a specific agenda. Hopwood then handed over to Mr Frederico Links, the lead researcher at IPPR, who reviewed the functionality of the Fact Check website.
Links mentioned that the Fact Check website is not exclusively to clarify statements made by the political parties, but to ensure that “fake news” that is spread digitally is given the platform to be clarified. The Fact Check website has not yet been populated with much data on the current facts that require checking, although Links stated that the public is able to provide information on the website on which facts they would like to be clarified. Should there be any discrepancies on the Fact Check website, those can be clarified by the public.
Closing remarks were made by Martha Nangolo, research consultant at the IPPR on behalf of Dr Clemens von Doderer , the country representative of the Hanns Seidel Foundation.
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