Africa Check is spearheading a coalition which sees a number of media houses including Daily Maverick, Mail & Guardian, AFP News and SABC come together to combat misinformation and disinformation ahead of elections in creative and innovative ways. 

The fact-checking coalition is being funded by the Google News Initiative, and has been tried and tested in Nigeria and Kenya already with much success.  

Africa Check’s deputy chief editor Cayley Clifford, the participation of more organisations and people in this fact-checking coalition is likely to increase the reach and have greater impact on public information and public dialogue.

Read the statement here

Disinformation and misinformation ahead of elections is always rife; with political parties making false claims to advance their narrative while friends and foes of respective parties perpetuate false claims to skew the public’s opinion. 

“The coalition will work together in the months leading up to the election to fact-check claims made by political parties, provide voters with reliable, non-partisan information on key issues, and equip the public with the skills they need to identify election misinformation,” according to Clifford.

Other parties who have joined the coalition include  Caxton Local Media, Tuks FM 107.2 and civil society organisation Section27

The main aim of the coalition is information sharing between these respective organisations.

“We have this joint aim of creating a space / an election environment where we can come together regularly, and have these meetings where we’re able to share information on the election trends that we have noticed and picked up on in our various monitoring systems,” Clifford told frayintermedia. 

Additionally, a big part of this coalition includes hosting  joint-workshops to train journalists how to find false claims and fact-check them accurately and then use these skills in their newsrooms. 

Read: How we fact check

Training tools include the use of artificial intelligence – not to replace the work of the fact-checker – but to make it easier, she said. 

Some of these tools include the Info Finder, which you can filter search to find facts and information on certain topics and in certain countries.  Another is a database which flags when a false claim (which has already been debunked) is being repeated in the public. The database gives quick access to the reporter to douse the false claim faster. 

Africa Check’s Promise Tracker has also proven to be an efficient tool to find false claims to debunk. The  tracker covers campaign periods going back five years and scours ruling party manifestos, political party websites and the transcripts of key speeches made during election campaigns. They keep adding to these pledges, track their progress, then judge the words against evidence for the public to form their own opinion.

As a group they will also flag some of the election stories which may skew a fact or two

The coalition’s ongoing processes and resources will be made public for other journalists.

To get involved contact Africa Check deputy chief editor Cayley Clifford at