…Says, “Social media influences voters.”
by Achadu Gabriel, Kaduna
“President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration achieved only but one out of two hundred and twenty-two campaign promises made to Nigerians,” a social media expert, Leslie B. Dongh, has said, quoting Buharimetre, a civil society monitoring reports and tracking of the implementation of the President’s campaign promises.
Leslie Dongh, in a paper titled, ‘Tracking Campaign Promises on Social Media,’ in Kaduna, said the reports gave the account of the All Progressives Party (APC)-led Federal Government from May 29th to December 31st, 2015, observation.
He quoted that, “In its assessment, the achievement was in the area of fighting against corruption, even though a lot was still left undone in that regards.”
Dongh noted that, campaign promises he achieved constituted 0.5 percent because of challenge of insecurity. “PMB has only achieved 1 out of 222 tracked campaign promises, which constitutes 0.5% of the promises.
“”More so, it reveals that the government is taking action to achieving only 27 (12.2%), approximately of the tracking ongoing, as electoral promises are still not rated. The latter constituted 87.3% of the tracking promises,” he noted.
According to the social media guru, “For democracy to function well the public figures need to be held accountable to whatever they said; the claims they made need to be checked openly and impartially.
“Independent check, non-partisan organization, accesses claims made in the public arena using journalistic skills and evidence drawn from the latest online tools, readers, public serve and experts, sorts facts from fiction and publishes the result.
“State member monitors the 100 most important campaign promises of the state governors in Nigeria and files campaign promises. Our reporters research the issues and rate it, based on whether the promises were achieved, promises kept, broken, compromised, stalled, worked, or yet to be rated, among others,” he stated.
He said platforms like Facebook and Twitter enable candidates during elections direct reach-out to voters, mobilize support and influence the public agenda and, therefore, makes it formidable for electioneering campaign periods.
These platforms could also enable all kinds of emergence of citizens’ engagement on utilization of identified technology-driven platforms for documenting and tracking campaign premises in the 2023 elections.
The meeting was convened under the ‘Partnership for Issue Based Campaign in Nigeria Learn, in collaboration with Partnership to Engaged, Reform and Learn (PERL), and drew participants from across different bodies, mainly NGOs, CSOs and others.
The over 50 participants on one-day sensitization were exposed on how citizens can hold politicians accountable to their promises during electioneering campaigns.
The objectives of the one-day sensitization, also supported by UKaid and The Agenda, are to review existing identified technology-driven platforms for tracking and documenting campaign commitments, according to the state lead facilitator of PERL, Abel Adejor.
They also brainstormed on strategies to increased utilization of digital platform to promote issue-based campaign and set agenda for candidates, and co-create work plan to scale-up tracking of campaign commitments in states, among others.
The platforms identified for tracking campaign promises on social media include: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and Tik Tok, respectively, according to the resources person.