In line with government efforts at all levels to curb the spread of fake news, the Abuja Film Village (AFV) has launched its Films in Education Media Literacy campaign and is training secondary school students to champion the initiative.
The event held on Monday at Government Secondary School, Garki, Zone 10, Abuja, was organized in partnership with “I Am the Future of Nigeria Youth Initiative” (IFON), Actors Guild of Nigeria (AGN) and the Nigerian Film Society.
Over 100 students were trained in the anti-fake news campaign, with guest speakers and resource persons from the creative industry, CSOs and relevant regulatory agencies.
AFV CEO Dr. Francisca Ibezim said the launch and training was a pilot phase of AFV’s Films in Education and Media Change campaign to combat the spread of misinformation.
According to her, the initiative aims to spread fake news while promoting film production education with the aim of propelling young people into future careers.
“There is a lot of information readily available online, so there is an urgent need to educate our children about true or false information.
“Given that 21st century children are growing up in a digital world and media are changing, they need to be educated about the consequences that change presents.
“It is therefore essential that media literacy and films in education awareness training be introduced into the Nigerian basic curriculum so that every Nigerian student can access the required knowledge.
“The internet and social media have given our youth access to a lot of information both true and false, teaching media literacy provides relevant skills to detect what information is false, misleading or actually real .
“It will allow them to think critically about all the information they process,” she said.
Ibezim therefore hailed the federal government’s decisive actions against fake news, while urging sustained and determined action given the easy access to information on the internet that could be used in hateful ways.
She, however, stressed the need to inculcate and promote media literacy and films in educational awareness training in the national education curriculum for accessibility to every Nigerian child.
As part of the engagement, the CEO of “I am the Future of Nigeria Youth Initiative”, Ms. Noni Okocha, delivered “Spot the Fake News” training to 100 secondary school students.
Participating students also received additional training in film production and photography to enable them to develop an interest in media as a future career.
Nollywood stars and filmmakers led by the National Chairman of the Actors Guild of Nigeria (AGN), Ejezie Emeka Rollas (MON) attended the event.
The AGN helmsman praised the AFV for spearheading the Films in Education media literacy campaign and pledged the guilds continued support and commitment to working with the film village.
The Abuja Film Village (AFV) is a public-private partnership initiative of the Federal Capital Territory Administration, aimed at making Abuja, and by extension Nigeria, a one-stop-shop for entertainment excellence and cinema.
It serves as a bridge between the film industry, the education sector, the workforce and our community.