SaharaReporters has emerged winner among eight African newsrooms at the just concluded first Mo Ibrahim Editors Lab Hackathon, which took place in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire.

The three-man team led by Seun Akinfolarin, Director of the MacArthur-funded Civic Media Lab, built a promising solution to stop the myths and misinformation around African migrations.

The occasion, one of the side events at the 2019 Mo Ibrahim Foundation’s Ibrahim Governance Weekend (IGW), involved newsrooms from Congo DRC, Senegal, Burundi and the host Côte d’Ivoire.

Sahara Reporters Media Foundation’s Africana platform is set to get stakeholders in the media to work with newsrooms for a more unbiased reporting of African Migration stories. Africa Check and ESMA came second and third respectively.

The SaharaReporters team also added that they would work with organisations such as the Mo Ibrahim Foundation and United Nations, and use their data to generate the visualisations that would go into the website.

Other projects pitched by other organisations include an interactive and infographic-based information application, which will include data, testimonials from migrants, and media articles in order to correct narratives and make information about African Migrations more accessible to the public.

Abidjan.net proposed developing an application that will inform youth between 18 and 40 about the topic of illegal migrations.

Ivoiresoir's 'Point Focal' addresses the lack of work security in Côte d'Ivoire. A questionnaire would be put forward to Ivorians to identify their challenges and help direct public policies for more work security.

Habari RDC, an organization based in the Democratic Republic of Congo, proposed “project Migrator”, a plugin to be installed on information websites in order to direct users to other pages where they can get more accurate data about African Migration.

ESMA pitched an idea to develop a website, 'Young people, come build your country', which will share accurate data and testimonials to encourage the African diaspora youth to return to their countries & invest in the continent.

Also, Africa Check proposed a platform to aggregate official statistics & accurate data and make them easily accessible to users. By sharing information about who the migrants are and where they come from, they hope to address misperceptions about African Migrations.

Lastly, Lexpression Info pitched an idea on developing a Migration Dictionary. The dictionary will provide users with data and research on African Migrations through clicking of letters or numbers.

The Judges at the #EditorsLab hackathon who gave a unanimous vote for SaharaReporter’s Africana platform are Cyriac G. Gbogou, co-founder of Ovillage; Bertrand Pecquerie, CEO of Global Editors Network; and Adebola Williams, CEO of Red Media Africa and Daouda Coulibaly.

The Global Editors Network Editors Lab programme is a worldwide series of hackathons hosted by leading news organisations. Editors Lab brings together developers, journalists, and designers from top newsrooms to build news prototypes during an intensive two-day competition.

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