Facebook parent company, Meta, has disclosed plans to activate an Election Operations Centre for the upcoming 2023 general election in Nigeria.
The company said this would help curb the spread of misinformation and ensure a safe and secure general election by investing in people and technology.
This was revealed in a blog post titled, ‘How Meta is Preparing for Nigeria’s 2023 General Elections’ by Adaora Ikenze, Meta’s Head of Public Policy for Anglophone West Africa.
The post outlined a few steps which the company plans to take in preparation for the elections and was subdivided with headings like, removing harmful content, combating misinformation, addressing virality on Whatsapp, making political advertising more transparent, fighting election interference, working with local organizations and encouarging civic engagement.
Concerning the election operation centre, the post read, “As Election Day approaches, we will activate a Nigeria-specific Elections Operations Center focused on identifying potential threats across our apps and technologies in real-time, accelerating our response time.
“This initiative will bring together experts from across our company on our intelligence, data science, engineering, research, operations, public policy and legal teams.”
Meta, which is also the parent company of WhatsApp and Instagram, added that they would remove the most serious kinds of misinformation from the platforms and work with local election authorities including the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) as well as independent fact-checking organizations such as AFP, Africa Check, Dubawa, and Reuters.
According to Statista, as of December 2022, there were about 28 million Nigerians on Facebook, while Instagram had more than 7.8 million users from the country.