Albanian CSOs rise up to the challenge of misinformation with letter to Gates Foundation

Tirana Times
By Tirana Times June 19, 2020 15:46

Albanian CSOs rise up to the challenge of misinformation with letter to Gates Foundation

June, 18, 2020- Two representatives of Albanian civil society have recently written to the Gates Foundation to denounce the disinformation campaign that has touched Albania in relation to Covid-19 as well as offer their assistance in propelling initiatives that are based in facts and expertise in order to support a better understanding of the situation away from myths and misconceptions. 

Dr. Arben Ramkaj from the Inter-religious collaboration Center in Elbasan as well as Franceska Muco from theYoung Professionals Network have co-authored this letter told Tirana Times that their objective is to counter this narrative in appreciation of the significant help that the Gates Foundation has given to the development of humanitarian and civil society initiatives all over the world. This acknowledgment of the Foundation's role is highlighted in the letter as well. Both CSOs are not recipients of the foundation grants and funds.

Additionally they wanted to make sure that a distinction is being made between the narrow and misinformed view of a small group and the rest of the Albanian society. "It is essential that we have such initiatives of civil society to offer real alternatives to the fake news in order to assist society in handling and succeeding over the Covid-10 pandemics and its negative effects," Dr Ramkaj said. 

On June 2, a small group of people held a protest in Tirana, to denounce in their view the world conspiracy for domination via the Covid-19 virus and the vaccine against it. 

They were led by Alfred Cako, a controversial figure that has spread fake news and theories in Albanian mediaabout the alleged role of Bill Gates and his Foundation as well as George Soros in spreading the virus or the conspiracy in order to assert dominance over the vaccine. This kind of rhetoric has been present all over the world where various conspiracy dealing actors have been quick to capitalize on the spread of misinformation via social and online platforms.  Unfortunately Albanian media has not filtered them out in a commercial effort to harvest clicks and views using their attention grabbing sensationalist claims. 

In addition to the co-Chairs of the Gates Foundation, Bill and Melinda Gates, the letter has also been sent to theFoundation's Europe Director Anja Langenbucher.

Tirana Times
By Tirana Times June 19, 2020 15:46