By Golden Kang’oma Junior
Salima, May 19, Mana: Director of Health and Social Services (DHSS) for Salima, Yonasi Chise has described the media as key in disseminating information and bringing awareness on issues to do with COVID–19.
Chise said this during a one-day media training session the district council organised to mentor journalists from community radio stations and other media houses in the district on issues to do with Coronavirus which was conducted through the district’s Information Office with support from World Vision.
He said journalists have the capacity to change the mindset of communities through imparting in them the right information, hence the training.
“People in communities are getting different information everyday through social media platforms, some of which is not correct.
“You the media are the only platform that has great influence in changing their mindset that is awash with fake news,” he said.
The Health Director said there are still some people out there who, until now, do not believe that COVID-19 is real, hence the need for journalists to take a leading role in informing the rural masses.
“There has been a lot of misinformation and fake news circulating regarding the COVID-19 and that is what prompted us to come up with this training so that we equip you with the right information so that you help us to disseminate the same to communities out there,” said Chise.
Salima District Information Officer (DIO), Grace Kapatuka said the media play a vital role in dissemination of information.
However, she said for them to do that effectively, they need to be imparted with necessary skills and knowledge so that they report professionally on issues to do with COVID-19.
“We noticed gaps in the way issues surrounding COVID-19 were being reported. That is why we sourced some funds to train journalists. Now that the journalists have been trained, we expect to have verified stories and well produced programs,” she said.
One of the journalists, Joseph Mazizi said it was a great opportunity for them as journalists to be trained on COVID-19.