Role of Library and Librarians in Preventing Fake News and Hate Speech for Political Stability and Development
The spate of hate speech, misinformation, and unguarded utterances in the Nigerian society has been on the increase. This has led to instances as kidnapping, banditry, dislike, enmity, unfair treatment, hatred and other expressions of disaffection. The effect on the society is further experienced loss of lives and properties. Thus, this paper discusses the role library and librarians in ameliorating such situation, in Nigeria, and beyond. From a librarian background, the paper argues that information is very fundamental when it is accessible and useful to the community. Apparently, no community can prosper when information delivered are not properly disseminated to the right person and at the right time, in a right format. Librarians and other information professionals are custodians and disseminators of information which have been playing very prominent role within the communities; they find themselves by providing and offering useful information services to the people. Libraries through the information services offered had provided the opportunity for people to interact and share ideas with others and foster a sense of belonging to the community. Hate speech and fake news are referred to as misinformation of which is characterized as false or inaccurate information deliberately intended to deceive. In a way of safeguarding the community, the library and librarians have fundamental role of disseminating accurate information, providing public enlightenment programmes through the use of radio, television, social media platforms and as well providing adequate and current information resources to the community in the most understanding language. The urge to spread misguided information lies on people’s perception, religious sentiment, language barrier, cultural differences. etc. Conclusively, the pervasiveness of hate speech and fake news has become a major worry for the goodhearted Nigerians considering the impact of peace and security in the nation and the effort of information professionals have been disdained by miscreants serving as agent of mass destruction of life and properties day in day out in our societies. Recommendations were preferred as quick remedy to alleviate hate speech and fake news as to ensuring that sentiments are jettison in all ramifications and as well librarian should be adequately train and retrained on the job routine.