The National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE) has expressed concern about the malicious spread of fake news and misinformation targeted at confusing the electorate to vote in a certain direction in the upcoming elections.

According to the NCCE, the trading of insults, peddling of falsehood and deployment of intemperate language in the run up to the 2020 elections is also distressing, especially as the country is just four days away from the polls.

In a press statement signed by the Director of Communications and Corporate Affairs at the NCCE, Joyce Afutu, it said, “The Commission is worried that the proliferation of social media platforms is facilitating the publication and spread of inaccurate and untrue stories as if they were correct and factual.”

They warned that the creation and distribution of fake news especially concerning the upcoming elections could plunge the country into anarchy and thus advised Ghanaians “to critically consider the source of the news they access” before sharing.

“Citizens are hereby reminded that the creation and distribution of fake news, if not checked, could plunge our society into chaos.

“A seemingly innocent fake news that makes false claims about the winner of elections can be dangerous, which could lead to disruptive behaviour and incidents of violence and civil unrest.

“Thus, to safeguard the peace and stability of our country, NCCE reminds Ghanaian voters to critically consider the source of the news they access,” they stated.

They also advised the public to verify information from reliable sources before sharing it across social media platforms to avoid the spread of fake news.

“The Commission urges the public, to be wary when reposting, retweeting, and forwarding information that has not been verified.

“The rule of thumb in reducing the spread of fake news is that if you are uncertain as to the authenticity of the piece of information, please hold off on sharing with others,” the Commission stated.

They thus urged the media to be circumspect and vigilant in their reportage, and the exercise of their right to be measured in what they share in order not to further stoke tensions during this election period.

The Commission further stated that it has amply advised political parties to campaign on issues and not insults as the latter “is not healthy in sustaining the gains Ghana has made in its democratic practise.”

“Having come this far as a country in our democratic journey in the fourth republic, the NCCE entreats all political actors to eschew political mudslinging, attacks, and all deadly machinations that do not auger well for anyone.”

The NCCE called on Ghanaians to reject politicians who stoke tension and violence through the use of intemperate, insolent and terrible insults of their opponents.

“We also entreat elections observer missions both national and international to take critical look at the media landscape with an eagle’s eye on fake news to help dispel the mischief,” they added.

“With the hope that Ghana would emerge victorious in this 8th elections under the Fourth Republic, the NCCE further urges every eligible voter to vote, stay calm, be tolerant and conduct themselves peacefully in order to make Ghana proud again,” the NCCE concluded.