Abuja Declaration: Group Advocates Improved Financing On Media And Information Literacy (MIL)

A non-profit organization, Agate Multimedia Concepts, has tasked stakeholders on the implementation of the Abuja Declaration on the Financing of Media and Information Literacy (MIL).

According to the group, the Declaration calls for the channelling of funding from government and non-governmental sources to media and information training programs that will see every human being become media and information literate.

This was contained in a statement made available to journalists on Tuesday by the Project Coordinator of Agate Multimedia Concepts, Taiwo Oladapo in Ibadan.

This is with particular reference to a Capacity Building and Advocacy billed for 19 and 20 April, 2023 with the theme: “Empowering Young People in Achieving The Abuja Declaration on Media and Information Literacy (MIL)” at University of Ibadan, Nigeria.

According to him, in the global, sustainable context, Media and Information Literacy (MIL) competencies are indispensable to the critical understanding and engagement in development of democratic participation, sustainable societies, building trust in media, good governance and peacebuilding.

He noted that in today’s 21st century societies, it is necessary that all people acquire MIL competencies (knowledge, skills and attitude).

He said the Declaration among other things, wants the member States to continue to: “Work together with academic institutions and other educational stakeholders to organize workshops with journalists, information professionals, news organizations and audiences made up of educators, young people, and seniors in schools and learning spaces, as well as across communities to improve people’s skills to critically assess digital content, news and information

“Support the set-up of a UNESCO MIL Schools Connect Programmes/MIL Clubs- build a network of schools in every part of the world. This will serve as a durable foundation for critical thinking through comprehensive MIL training programs right from early year learners and schools for everyday learning.”

With the above in mind, he noted that there is still much advocacy needed to ensure the implementation of the Declaration by the governments, CSOs and other key stakeholders of the world.

He said Nigerian youths are an integral part of the project because their large population who are social media users can help stop the spread of misinformation.

“In this situation, Nigerian youths play an important role. For one, due to being active users of the social media, they are key actors in the spread and consumption of misinformation.

” In another regard, due to being a large percentage of the demography of the country, they can play a key role in fighting misinformation and advocacy for media and information literacy,” he said.

He noted that the major objective of this project is to empower MIL advocates with the knowledge and capacity to advocate for the Abuja declaration and also sustain awareness about the declaration.

“To this end, this project is targeting and creating an opportunity for members of Students’ Media and Information Literacy Club (SMILC) to learn the key roles they can play advocating for the Abuja Declaration in their various communities.

SMILC is an African youth-led organisation empowering students across different disciplines with media and information literacy skills and the capacity to advocate for MIL in their various communities through a variety of initiatives, including conferences, workshops, Twitter Spaces, and university-based chapters-MIL.

Some few members of the club played vital roles during the last 2022 MIL Global Week.

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