Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.


Africa fact-checking website launches

01 November 2012, 08:31

Johannesburg - Africa's first fact-checking website launched Wednesday in South Africa, a project devised by the AFP Foundation and run in partnership with the University of the Witwatersrand to hold the country's leaders accountable.

"The website is Africa's first website dedicated to fact checking, to promoting ideas of verification and accuracy in the public debate," said Anton Harber, head of the journalism department at Wits at the unveiling of the www.Africacheck.org site.

The site's founders aim to eventually roll it out in other African countries to give the public, and especially journalists, a fact-checking network spanning a continent where accessing public data is often a process riddled with obstacles.

Modelled on similar sites in the United States and Europe - and working under the tagline "Sorting fact from fiction" - Africa Check's aim is to hold politicians, journalists and experts to their word.

"We will quite simply follow things that are said in the public arena by politicians or by other media or by experts, and where we think they need checking, we will verify them and we will publish what we find, to say this was true, this was not true, or it was disputed and here's how you understand the nature of that dispute," Harber said.

"In South Africa it can be difficult," he added.

"Although we have a constitution and laws about transparency and openness and making public data available to the public, in practice it is not always easy to get the information. There's not necessarily a culture of openness in a lot of government departments."

The AFP Foundation, which is dedicated to promoting and teaching journalism worldwide, "is proud to support the Africa Check project, the first of its kind in Africa," its director Robert Holloway said in a statement.

"This project aims at promoting transparency and good governance in South Africa and we hope later to repeat it in other countries."

The site is currently managed by project staff at the university, but it aims to become a forum for interactive contributions by South African journalists.

Speaking earlier this year, former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan said: "I salute the work of Africa Check as an important initiative engaging with journalists and citizens across the continent to raise the level of public debate."



Read News24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Read more from our Users

Nigeria @ 56: Words to my green f...

A leader’s job is not to dictate, but rather to be respected, admired and be a trustee, of the land we love, with so much potential, a land which should be freer than free. Its still a long way to fufilling our destiny! Read more...

Submitted by
Isaac Asabor263
Recession: An opportunity for Nig...

The recession should be seen as an opportunity for the country’s promotion as long as we all collectively conduct ourselves in a patriotic manner, writes Isaac Asabor.  Read more...

Submitted by
Black and White

We want to imitate the whites in everything because we are ignorant of our inherent originality and content. We spend all our Naira to acquire his inventions because we so oblivious of our natural endowments that we allow him have it for free. Read more...

Submitted by
Nate Nat
Adamawa State University Mubi: A ...

ADSU integrity forum has accused the Sunday Joshua Wugira, a lawyer, of adopting unorthodox tactics by abusing his privilege by attacking the integrity of ADSU Vice Chancellor Dr. Moses Zira Zaruwa, writes a News24 reader. Read more...

Submitted by
Abdulsalam Jubril
My Country Nigeria (Part One)

Poetry by Abdulsalam Jubril.

Submitted by
Abdulsalam Jubril
Recession, dearth in leadership a...

Every leader has the opportunity to become great and making himself immortal in the lives and hearts of people for generations to come. Will Mr. President seize this opportunity?, questions Abdulsalam Jubril. Read more...