The Lagos State Government is targeting two million followers, by June, on its online social platform, Citizens Gate.
The state Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Kehinde Bamigbetan, set the target on Monday at the 2018 Social Media Week Lagos.
The government launched the mobile app in January 2017 to facilitate interaction between it and the state residents.
Citizens Gate, launched under the Citizens Relations Management initiative of the government, will enable the residents to make enquiries and suggestions on government services and get faster responses.
Bamigbetan was in the panel that discussed the topic: ”Bringing Lagos Closer through Social Media-Inspired Community Journalism”.
The 2018 Social Media Week Lagos is the sixth edition.
The weeklong event, with the theme: ‘Closer, will feature discussions covering the future of media, travel, governance and gender inclusion.
The event will also feature discussion on entertainment and emerging ideas and trends across the globe.
Bamigbetan said that Lagos State Government would collaborate with experts to achieve the feat.
“There is power in social media; it helps us to communicate and get feedback from citizens in a short time.
“Social media is a platform that everyone needs to be on; the government will leverage on it so as to meet the needs of its citizens,” he said.
Bamigbetan urged caution while responding to issues posted on the platform.
“One needs not allow emotions to take over while responding to issues on the platform, as oppositions will capitalise on the issue to bring one down.
“Having a cool headed will allow one to manage issues with citizens online; in doing this, one needs to understand that some people lack online etiquette,” he said.
The Commissioner urged members of the public to be active on the platform which, he said, would enable the state government to direct complaints to the right directions.
Tosyn Bucknor, Digital Editor, KWESE Africa, who was also in the panel, said that social media was controlling community-inspired journalism.
She, however, noted that such journalism had source verification challenge.
According to her, verification of news sources was necessary for credibility.
“Anybody can come online and post whatever he wants, to buttress a point, not minding if it is real or fake.
“We need to understand that online news spreads like wildfire; so, we need to find out who are the sources so as not to fall short of the law.
“We should not sacrifice the credibility for breaking a news story,’’ she advised.
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