After the lack of cooperation from several international social media platforms, the government is relying on a government-specific media wing which will be responsible for debunking fake news, explaining government policies, and the optimisation of digital media strategies, including advertising for campaigns. This was confirmed by Prime Minister’s (PM) focal person on digital media Dr Arslan Khalid. This is certainly a step in the right direction, especially due to the lack of a coherent narrative from the government. This can help the government explain its policy choices along with convincing people why certain changes and certain rules are necessary to implement within the political system.

This will also help take off the burden from political actors who have been at the forefront of information sharing for Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI). The establishment of such a wing can help fine-tune the ideas of the government and if perhaps they can bring researchers on board, their social media wing can be converted to more than just statements that party’s members also share on national television. At the same time, there will be a lot of responsibility for the creation of such a wing online. We have witnessed in the last year and a half, how politics between the mainstream parties is very derogatory at the moment. If the media wing of the government engages in the same petty concerns, it will be a futile exercise because the aim is information sharing and awareness regarding pertinent issues of Pakistan at the moment.

The digital space needs to be used very responsibly, and with the government decided to actively engage in the online sphere, they need to be the first ones to set the right precedents so that if successive governments follow suit, the media wing can be used as a tool of accountability rather than a complicit government body being utilised for party agendas and to maintain control over the political narrative in the country.