Fact-checking Claims On Bayelsa’s Population And Finances

Category: Best visualization (small and large newsrooms)

Country/area: Nigeria

Organisation: Dubawa Nigeria

Organisation size: Small

Publication date: 15/11/2019

Credit: Oluwasegun OLAKOYENIKAN

Project description:

The project focus on false and misleading claims on the population and allocation, as well as the potential effect of these on Bayelsa state in southsouthern Nigeria, to meet its financial obligations as it was set to elect a new governor.

While it’s mostly true that Bayelsa received the fourth highest allocation in the country, at least for the most of 2019, available data do not support the claim that the state received N66.76 billion.

We justified this using relevant data from Nigeria’s repository of data, the National Bureau of Statistics.

Impact reached:

Th story filled a significant information gap on Bayelsa state population and finances at a time several claims were circulating on social media in the build-up to the state’s governorship election.

It set the record straight for an important issue having implications on national discourse because the claims referenced the fact that the state was not only the smallest in the country but supposedly smaller than Nigeria’s most populous local government area of Alimisho. In spite of this, the claims suggest the Nigerian southsouthern state was among the top states with highest federal allocation.


Techniques/technologies used:

I used Infogram as my visualisation tool. The tool enables users to create engaging and interactive infographics for proper conveyance of messages and better reading experience. 

I simply collated data on federation allocation account committee extracted from Nigeria’s National Bureau of Statistics on a monthly basis, cleaned and presented on a sheet on the Infogram interactive tool. This chart is then embedded in the story.

What was the hardest part of this project?

The hardest part of the project was collating the data. The National Bureau of Statistics releases the federal allocation account committee data separately on monthly basis. This makes it difficult to monitor the trend for each state and make any reasonable conclusion over any period. I had to extract these rough revenue figures for each of Nigeria’s 36 states in some the available months, compile them together in a sheet, i proceeded to apply some features of the Infogram tool for visualisation purpose.

What can others learn from this project?

Others can learn how to make data more appealing to readers by using tools such as Infogram, Infographia, Flourish and many others. They have different features that can help to capture most of the messages you’re trying to pass across in one chart. It becomes very interesting when the reader can inetract with the charts, it builds loyalty and makes stories more compelling to read.

Project links: