The Media Council of Kenya (MCK) in partnership with the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) has launched a platform dubbed iVerify Network of Fact-Checking Desks to be used in preventing misinformation, disinformation and hate speech ahead of the August general election.

The Council’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO) David Omwoyo stated that the objective of the platform will also be to publish fact-checked reports and coordinate responses through a multi-stakeholder approach to mitigate threats to information integrity.

Omwoyo said that they are engaging several stakeholders to drive the fact-checking agenda to ensure professional reporting that is hinged on facts.

“We have trained our staff across the country, and we will be at hand to support media workers countrywide through capacity building on fact-checking,”

Omwoyo further added that it is important to give the media the necessary tools to provide facts.

“The iVerify platform can be used by journalists individually by uploading information on the iVerify website to confirm accuracy,”

Dan Juma of UNDP noted that a high number of Kenyans are digital users with 75 percent of them finding it hard to distinguish between what information is real and fake during the period of elections.

“The iVerify platform not only targets the elections but will also be used as an information verification tool on all issues,”

State Department of Broadcasting and Telecommunication Principal Secretary Esther Koimett noted that campaigns have seen an explosion of misinformation, disinformation and hate speech especially during political rallies.

“We believe that the platform will help to restore law and order on the use of social media by sharing accurate and balanced information,”

Koimett further applauded MCK for its partnership with UNDP for the Network to safeguard integrity of the information landscape in Kenya.

The platform will enhance consumption of accurate information and will support the Government in bridging the gap between news cycle and fact checking for professional reporting.