THE use of social media in the electoral process is beneficial to the electorate for them to know their preferred candidates on how they are faring during the campaign period, says Zambia Election Information Centre (ZEIC) ICT officer Martha Chilongoshi.
Ms Chilongoshi said the importance of social media in the 2016 general elections was that the voters would easily counter-check information on their respective political players or parties and make an informed decision.
She encouraged the youths to always utilise social media to research on various political issues for them to have a good track record about the political scenario in Zambia.
Ms Chilongoshi said however that social media should not be abused by political players through the posting falsehoods or use it as a platform of hatred because that would degrade the noble principles of information and communication technology.
She said the world was changing on a daily basis in terms of technology and Zambians should adapt to the latest trends in the world of ICT for them to access information easily.
Ms Chilongoshi said ZEIC had embarked on a sensitisation and training programme to assist the young people on how best they could learn the proper usage of social media during this year’s August 11 elections.
The ICT personnel said ZEIC was a non-governmental organisation which was not affiliated to any political party but comprised stakeholders interested in educating the electorate about the importance of social media during and after elections.
Ms Chilongoshi stated that if social media was properly used it was able to make the electorate have a better understanding about the vitality of ICT in the electoral process.
She said that ZEIC was also working with the media and other stakeholders in different parts of Zambia especially in rural areas to make sure that people on the ground also took part in the usage of the electoral social media during this year’s elections which included the referendum.