On March 21th, 2017, the African School of Economics (ASE) received at its weekly Academic Research Seminar Alex Dobyan, current Princeton-in-Africa fellow at ASE. His topic was: Who sells the truth? A case study of reporting in the Boko Haram crisis. Alex explained the manipulation of information in the media with the effect of creating an environment of uncertainty and mistrust among the Nigerian population.

 

For example, he showed for the same period and the same attack, very varied figures in the newspapers: from 30 to 300 victims. In this context of manipulation, populations unable to identify credible sources and are suspicious of government sources.

 

Going further, Mr. Dobyan reports that in case of defeat on the ground, the actors in conflicts invent statistics and give information that suits them. According to the researcher,  this information failure is hampering the Nigerian government from getting more support from the affected population to ultimately defeat Boko Haram.