Latifa Akharbach, the President of the High Authority for Audiovisual Communication (HACA) considered that the fight against disinformation engages both the media, regulators, civil actors and the public, but it must be included in public policies. relevant, sustainable and respectful of freedoms.
“The digital transformation of the public space has brought many new opportunities, particularly in terms of freedom of expression and access to information, but also many risks, of which disinformation is one of the most serious examples”, declared Latifa Akharbach, during her participation in the online seminar organized on March 31, 2022 by the International Organization of La Francophonie (OIF) on the occasion of the launch of the French-speaking platform of initiatives to combat disinformation (ODIL) .
“Disinformation causes public harm, in terms of security, health, democratic functioning, social cohesion and living together“, she says.
“We have all seen how the infodemic has affected public action in the fight against the covid 19 pandemic by sometimes thwarting public support for health policies and vaccination strategies”, she argued.
Responding to a question on the role of the HACA in this regard, Akharbach cited in particular the normative production of the Superior Council for Audiovisual Communication and the provisions included in the specifications of the operators who publish radio and television services in order to guarantee respect for the honesty and ethics of information.
She also gave the example of the recommendation relating to the legislative, regional and municipal elections, which took place in September 2021 in Morocco and which, for the first time, expressly mentioned the fight against disinformation as a point of vigilance. imposing itself on radio and television editors.
During her speech, the president of the HACA also declared that during the pandemic crisis, the Moroccan audiovisual media mobilized to counter fake news and conspiratorial narratives related to the pandemic.
This seminar brought together media regulatory bodies, experts, researchers, journalists and association actors around the issues of “checking the facts in the French-speaking world”, “the fight against disinformation and research”, “the fight against disinformation and media and information literacy”, and “countering disinformation in public policies”.