Skip to main content
Tag

Fact Check - Centre for Democracy & Development

FACT CHECK: Is it true Shekarau’s Shura shared ‘N100m largesse’ from Atiku?

By Fact ChecksNo Comments

CLAIM: On Monday, a picture of some persons said to be members of Shura, the advisory council of Senator Ibrahim Shekarau’s political movement, seated in front of a huge sum of money trended on social media.

In the picture, bunches of N1,000 notes were seen scattered on a long table while two women and about eight men sat on chairs lined around the table.
An online news platform had said the money was part of the largesse shared by former Vice-President Atiku Abubakar, who received Shekarau back into the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) last month.

VERIFICATION: Checks by Daily Trust showed that the report is misleading. When Atiku visited Kano alongside his running mate and top chieftains of the party in late August, some of his other activities aside from welcoming Shekarau who had dumped the New Nigeria Peoples Party for PDP were widely reported in the media.

Atiku had donated money to some victims of the flood disasters and building collapse in Kano, which was reported by various media platforms.

Contacted to react to the trending picture, the spokesman for Shekarau, Dr Sule Ya’u Sule, said it was unfortunate that the picture would be used to rubbish the good intention of Atiku to the victims.

He said the picture was taken and shared by the media team of Shekarau to show the transparent approach adopted in sharing the donated money to the victims of Kantin Kwari flood disaster and those of the building collapse at the Beirut road GSM Market.

“N50m was donated to Kantin Kwari, N10m to Beirut road and N20m to Ulamas. And the sharing was done in the open in Shekarau’s house to show transparency and it was unfortunate that some individuals on social media and some media houses have decided to use the picture to create fake news,” he said.

Also speaking, the Public Relations Officer of Kantin Kwari Market Association, Aminu Garba Sofa, told Daily Trust Shekarau had presented the cheque of N50 million donated to flood victims in the market and that a committee was immediately set up to see to its distribution, adding that the money was cashed and given to them at Shekarau’s Mudunbawa residence.

“Three committees were set up to oversee the activity; one from Shekara’u side, one from affected victims and the other from market Association forming 15-men committee. The money was distributed accordingly after screening of the affected victims.

“397 persons were screened and given each accordingly. You know, N50 million is nothing compared to the loss but everybody out of that number has received (money) in presence of all representatives of the three committees,” he said.

Also speaking in a live video posted on Facebook on Friday, the Chairman, Kantin Kwari Market, Salisu Wada Sharu, who was seen in a viral picture at the residence of Shekarau, confirmed that they had received the money and distributed to those affected.

He however said some of the flood victims did not collect the money, saying they had surrendered the loss to the will of God.

Conclusion: There’s no evidence to show that the money seen in the viral picture is a largesse from Atiku.

FACT CHECK: Is The NCDC Disbursing COVID-19 Survival Funds To Nigerians?

By Fact ChecksNo Comments

CLAIM: The NCDC is disbursing COVID-19 survival funds to Nigerians.

VERDICT: False

CONTEXT: A message purportedly from the Director General of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), Dr Ifedayo Adetifa, is currently making the rounds on Whatsapp. The message alleged that the DG was available to authorize payments from the COVID-19 survival funds.

Part of the message reads: “…Congrats! You have been selected and qualified for N80,000 survival funds from the Federal Government Program.” After revealing the approved banks to include FCMB, Keystone, Union, Unity, TAJ and Zenith banks, it also urged beneficiaries to drop their account numbers and contact one Mr Ken Balogun on a phone number provided.

FACT-CHECKING PROCESS: Background checks by fact-checkers at the Centre for Democracy and Development revealed that it is not the first time this kind of claim, especially as regards the disbursement of COVID-19 relief funds, will flood the internet.

In April 2022, Daily Trust also fact-checked some of these claims and found them to be false. This is in addition to former fact checks of this nature conducted by the Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD). Similarly, the research also showed that such adverts and notices are issued specifically by fraudsters to defraud unsuspecting members of the public.

NCDC is the national public health institute for Nigeria. It is a federal government agency under the Federal Ministry of Health, with its headquarters in Abuja. The agency’s goal is to protect Nigerians from the impact of communicable diseases through the coordination of public health preparedness, surveillance, laboratory, and response functions for all infectious diseases.

Fact-checkers also found out in the course of investigating the claim that, those perpetrating this fraud have changed their antics to include varying the amounts they claim are to be paid to beneficiaries and giving the alleged grant different names.

Last year, the Federal Government of Nigeria warned Nigerians to be wary of fraudulent messages making the rounds over a purported payment of N80,000 to beneficiaries of the Survival Fund Scheme.

Further research showed that there is no official message or communication from the Dr Ifedayo Adetifa or his office authorizing such payments. It could also be noticed from the WhatsApp message in circulation, that the NCDC DG’s name was not spelt correctly, which confirmed doubts as to the authenticity of the viral post.

CONCLUSION: Facts at our disposal negate the claim that the Director General of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), Dr Ifedayo Adetifa, is disbursing N80,000 as a COVID-19 survival fund to Nigerians.

Members of the general public are advised to be cautious and ask questions from informed individuals when in doubt and they should also be wary of sharing their bank account details with unknown persons as fraudsters have perfected ways to defraud citizens, the world over.

Was The Pilot Who Supplies Weapons to Bandits Arrested in Niger State?

By Fact ChecksNo Comments
Source: HumAngle

VERDICT: False and Misleading

CLAIM: On August 26, 2022, fact-checkers at the Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD) spotted a claim on Facebook and several blogposts, including NairaLand, with the caption: “Pilot who supplies weapon to bandits has been arrested in Niger State, North Central Nigeria. The claim added that the Indigenous people of Niger state arrested Juan Remy, a helicopter pilot, who supplies weapons to bandits. Another claim to the image alleged that the former head of state, General Abubakar Abudlsalami own the bandits’ helicopter.

FACT: Nigeria is facing one of her worse security challenges in history, with Boko Haram insurgency in the Northeast, Banditry in the Northwest and Central and other militia groups in the South of the country. This is not the first time, claim of other National’s involvement in supplying weapons to Nigeria will trend online. 

CDD fact-checkers investigated the claim, using google reverse image search, and TinEye to verify the origin of the images of the supposed arrest. Evidence from the findings reveal the image first appeared online between May 10 and 11, 2021, where the Central African army arrested a man of French nationality, aged around fifty, with weapons and other artillery in Bangui the capital of Chad.  Juan Remy Quignolot’s was arrested in May 2021 in the Central African Republic after an arms stockpile was found in his house.

When contacted, the State Commissioner of Police, (CP) Monday Bala Kurya, through the Police Public Relation Officer DSP Wasiu A Abiodun, in a press release confirmed that no foreign nationale distributing weapons to Bandits was arrested in Niger State. He described the report as a piece of Fake News that such incidents never occurred in the state.

He called on members of the public to disregard such report as it aims at crating unnecessary chaos in the public domain.

CONCLUSION: CDD fact-checkers can confirm the claim the incidence happened in Central African Republic (CAR), where a French Nationale was arrested over allegations of stockpiling weapons in his house. But the claim that the French Nationale was arrested by locals for supplying weapons to Bandits in Niger State, North Central of Nigeria, is False

CDD is urging members of the public verify claims online before sharing same; especially news report from bloggers, who are in the habit of using sensational headlines to draw traffic to their blogs.

FACT CHECK: Was INEC Former ICT Director Demoted As Charly Boy Claimed?

By Fact Checks, UncategorizedNo Comments

CLAIM: The former ICT director at the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) headquarters, Engr Chidi Nwafor, has been demoted by the commission.

VERDICT: False

CONTEXT: A controversial entertainer and convener of the ‘OurMumuDonDo’ movement, Charles Chukwuemeka Oputa, alias Charly boy or Area Fada, has claimed in a very lengthy post on Facebook that the former Director of ICT at the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) headquarters, Engr Chidi Nwafor, has been demoted by the commission.

The post partly reads:

“…Instead of promoting the brain behind this electoral innovation, he was demoted and transferred to Enugu as Administrative Secretary just six months to the election. Is Prof Mahmood and INEC ready for a free and fair election in 2023 (sic)? There are already doubts. Please share to create massive awareness about this ugly development.”

VERIFICATION: Checks by Daily Trust revealed that on August 16, INEC National Commissioner and Chairman, Information and Voter Education Committee, Barr Festus Okoye, had in a brief statement disclosed the commission’s continuity with the routine deployment of top officials, including two Resident Electoral Cin commissioners (RECs) and eight directorate level staff members.

INEC redeployed 385 employees nationwide to ensure efficient and optimal performance in March. The affected workers were either serving in their states of origin or had worked between 10 and 32 years in the same state.

Perusing the statement issued by Festus Okoye, one could easily find that Engr Chidi was not the only director redeployed, as seven other directors were also affected by the shakeup. Reacting to Nwafor’s redeployment, Prof. Mohammad Kuna, the Special Adviser to the INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu said the exercise was normal. He made this known during a panel discussion at a two-day workshop theme, ‘The role and impact of digital technologies in facilitating peaceful elections in Nigeria’ organised by the National Peace Committee (NPC), headed by a former Head of State, Gen. Abdulsalami Abubakar (retd) and The Kukah Centre in Abuja recently.

Contrary to the claim by Charly boy that the former ICT director of INEC, Nwafor, was demoted, Daily Trust can confirm that the claim is false as he is still a director with INEC as categorized by the Nigeria Civil Service Commission. Nwafor was only redeployed from one department to another. In addition, the post of administrative secretary is a directorate-level position.

FACT CHECK: Are There 10 Nigerian States with Bigger GDPs Than Some African Countries?

By Fact Checks, UncategorizedNo Comments

CLAIM: 10 Nigerian states have larger Gross Domestic Product (GDPs) than some African nations.

VERDICT: True

CONTEXT: Nigeria Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo while receiving a group of Harvard Business School students at the State House in Abuja, urged the international community not to compare Nigeria to some smaller African countries in terms of economy. His statement read,

“When they talk about the economy, we are often compared with smaller African countries, but there are 10 states in Nigeria that have bigger GDPs than those countries; it is a huge target market.”

VERIFICATION: To verify the claim by the vice president, our partners at Daily Trust checked the GDPs of the 54 African countries, including Nigeria, and compared them with the GDPs of some economically viable states in Nigeria

Available data from World Bank-based size show that Nigeria leads the continent with an accumulated GDP of $514bn. Nigeria is closely followed by South Africa with $420bn, Egypt with N404bn, Algeria with N168bn, Ethiopia with $111bn, and Kenya with $110bn.

The statistics showed that African countries with GDP below $2bn include Cape Verde, Guinea Bissau, Comoros, Seychelles, Sao Tome and Principe.

Although there is no data on the current GDP of states in Nigeria, a 2017 nominal GDP report cited shows that the GDPs of 22 states stood at about $149bn out of the $375bn GDP of Nigeria.

Data from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) revealed that the nominal GDP of the 22 states accounted for about 56 per cent of the 45 countries’ entire GDP. The NBS report reads in part:

“In 2017, the nominal GDP for the 22 states (for which data is currently available) stood at N63.8trn or 56 per cent of Nigeria’s nominal GDP in that year.

In comparing the GDP figures of some Nigerian states to some African countries using the last figures obtained from the NBS, it is clear that indeed the GDPs of some states are bigger than those of some countries.

For instance, the report in 2017 indicated that the GDP figures of 22 states was nominal $149bn, which represents $7bn per state.

Consequently, this shows that the GDPs of states like Lagos, Rivers, Akwa Ibom, Kano, Imo, Delta, Kaduna and few others as mentioned by NBS are bigger than the GDPs of some countries which have GDPs of less than $5bn.

To further verify the claim our partners spoke to some experts including,

An economist and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Global Analytics Consulting Ltd, Dr Tope Fasua, confirmed the claim of the vice president, saying some Nigerian states had GDPs larger than some African countries.

Speaking to Daily Trust, he said, “Yes; the GDPs of Lagos, Rivers and a few other states may be larger than those of countries like the Gambia and a handful of other African countries. So it is a fact.

“In 2014, Minister Okonjo Iweala informed us that the FAAC allocation of Akwa Ibom State alone was the entire budget of Liberia. We could say the eight Nigerian states with the highest GDPs fall in this category.”

Similarly, The Chief Economic Strategist at the ECOWAS Commission, Prof Ken Ife, told Daily Trust,

“As of 2021, Nigeria’s GDP at $514b was more than 38 African countries put together. The 10 top Nigerian states with GDP totalling $148.1bn was more than those of 24 African countries, while Lagos with GDP of $29bn was more than nine African countries’ GDP.”

CONCLUSION: Following verifications and experts’ views, Daily Trust concludes that the claim by the vice president is true as there are states in Nigeria that have large GDPs due to their economic viability.

FACT CHECK: Checking Claims Made By the Health Minister, Osagie Ehanire.

By Fact Checks, UncategorizedNo Comments
Source: VanguardNews

CONTEXT: Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire, has claimed that there are enough doctors in Nigeria. During a press conference, he made the assertion in Abuja on Tuesday, August 23, 2022. He said,

“…We have heard complaints of doctors who are now leaving the system, but there are actually enough doctors in the system because we are producing up to 2,000 or 3,000 doctors every year in the country and the number leaving is less than 1,000.”

CLAIM 1: Does Nigeria have enough doctors?

VERDICT: False

VERIFICATION: Checks by our partners at Daily Trust revealed that data from the World Health Organization (WHO) in 2003 reported that three doctors were available to attend to 10,000 patients in the country. The recent report by WHO revealed that the ratio has increased to 10,000 people for four (4) doctors, signalling an increase in the doctor-patient ratio. However, WHO recommends 1 (one) doctor per 600 patients as the best doctor-patient ratio. The report captures African countries with better doctors-patient ratios than Nigeria, including Mauritius, Cape Verde, Tunisia, Egypt, etc. It also captures African countries with fewer doctors than Nigeria, including Angola, Kenya, Chad, Mali, etc.

Also, in an address by the Nigeria Medical Association (NMA) President, Innocent Ujah, during the virtual eighth biennial and scientific conference and annual general meeting of the Medical Women Association of Nigeria (MWAN), Kaduna state chapter, the president noted,

“the current doctor to population ratio in the country is about one doctor to between 4,000 and 5,000 population. This falls short of the one doctor to 600 population as recommended by the World Health Organisation. This means that we need about 303,333 medical doctors now, and at least 10,605 new doctors annually to bridge the manpower gap in the health sector,” he said.

Another survey conducted by the Nigeria Health Watch and NOI Polls showed that Nigeria has a deficit of qualified doctors and needs at least 237,000 doctors to ensure the population’s health needs are adequately catered for.

CLAIM 2: Number of doctors leaving Nigeria each year less than 1,000?

VERDICT: False

VERIFICATION: Estimation points out that no fewer than 2,000 doctors leave Nigeria yearly, with at least 8,983 Nigerian-trained medics currently working with the British National Health Service in the United Kingdom.

The General Medical Council of the United Kingdom website reveals that Nigeria has the third highest number of foreign doctors working in the UK, coming behind only India and Pakistan. It also shows that the number of foreign doctors working in the UK shows that no fewer than 727 medical doctors trained in Nigeria relocated to the United Kingdom alone and licensed between December 2021 and May 2022.

Recently, data from the Medical and Dental Consultants Association of Nigeria, MDCAN, revealed that the total number of doctors that have migrated to the UK in two years is nearly 9,000, while the total in the United States is about 3,895. This means that about 6,447 Nigerian doctors relocated to the UK and the US in each year.

CLAIM 3: Is Nigeria producing up to 2,000 or 3,000 doctors each year?

Verdict: Insufficient Evidence

VERIFICATION: Last year, the president of the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA), Innocent Ujah commented on the brain drain in the health sector hinted that the nation produced between 3,000 and 3,500 doctors annually. He said,

“…This is particularly disturbing because Nigeria only graduates about 3,000 to 3,500 medical doctors across medical schools in the country annually.”

We do not have sufficient evidence to independently confirm this claim as no database keeps track of the number of doctors produced annually in the country.

FACT CHECK: Did Larry Ellison Donate $1M for Peter Obi’s Presidential Campaign?

By Fact ChecksNo Comments
Source: Leadership Scorecard

CLAIM: American billionaire, Larry Ellison, donated about $1m to the presidential candidate of the Labour Party in the 2023 general elections, Mr Peter Obi.

VERDICT: False

CONTEXT: A news platform recently reported that American billionaire, Larry Ellison, donated about $1m to the presidential candidate of the Labour Party in the 2023 general elections, Mr Peter Obi. The story posted on the news platform’s Facebook page reads:

“American billionaire Larry Ellison donates 1m$ to “Peter Obi’s presidential campaign, offers to build “Plane Manufacturing Company” in Nigeria if Peter Obi wins.”

VERIFICATION: In verifying the claims, our partners at Daily Trust combed through the billionaire’s official social media pages but saw no announcement of such donations or promise of building a plane manufacturing company if Peter Obi wins the 2023 presidential election.

Checks also showed that hat the last time Ellison tweeted was on 06 June 2012 and no major news outlets in Nigeria and the United States reported the donation.

Based on checks by Daily Trust, there was no announcement or statement by Ellison on donations to Obi’s campaign. As such, the claim cannot be verified to be true

FACT CHECK: Has FG met 80% of ASUU’s demands as education ministry claimed?

By Fact ChecksNo Comments

CLAIM: The Federal Government of Nigeria has claimed that it has so far met about 80 per cent of the demands made by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU).

CONTEXT: While reacting to the indefinite extension of the strike embarked upon by the lecturers since February 2022, the Director of Press and Public Relations, Federal Ministry of Education, Bem Goong, on Monday, stressed that the federal government had deployed all measures to end the strike.

He said, “If you bring some demands and almost 80 per cent have been attended to, there is no need to drag the strike anymore.

VERIFICATION:

What are the demands?

A look at FG’s obligations as spelt out in the Memorandum of Action (MOA) it signed with ASUU on 23rd December 2020 revealed that the issues which led to the incessant strikes was a call by the university union on government to conclude the process of renegotiating the 2009 FGN/ASUU Agreement, deploy the University Transparency and Accountability Solution (UTAS), pay outstanding arrears of Earned Academic Allowances (EAA), release agreed sum of money for the revitalization of public universities (federal and states), address proliferation and governance issues in the state universities, settle promotion arrears, release withheld salaries of academics, and pay outstanding third-party deductions.

The federal government had in March this year inaugurated a seven-person committee chaired by Pro-Chancellor, Alex Ekweme Federal University Ndufu-Alike, Emeritus Professor Nimi Briggs.

The committee which was given a 3-month time frame to conclude its assignment was tasked with the renegotiation of the 2009 agreement reached with ASUU.

Earlier, President Muhammadu Buhari had directed the Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu to resolve the strike and report back to him. Up till now, there has been no record of a fruitful meeting between Adamu and ASUU.

The government had reportedly approved 35 per cent increase in salary for professors and 23.5 per cent increase for other lecturers – a decision rejected by the union.

Demands not yet met – ASUU

Rising from the National Executive Council (NEC) meeting of ASUU held on Monday in Abuja, the union’s president, Prof Emmanuel Osodeke, in a press release, said council members concluded to proceed on an indefinite strike over government’s refusal to honour agreements reached with the union.

He said, “For the avoidance of doubt, however, none of the issues that forced our Union to resume the suspended strike as listed in the December 2020 FGN-ASUU Memorandum of Action (MoA) has been satisfactorily addressed by the government to date. The draft renegotiated FGN-ASUU Agreement (second draft) remains unsigned; the University Transparency and Accountability Solution (UTAS) has not been adopted and deployed to replace the discredited Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS); and the White Papers on Visitation Panels to Federal Universities, if ready as claimed by Government more than six months ago, are nowhere to be found.

“Similarly, government has not delivered on the promised balance of one tranche of the Revitalization Fund more than one year after, the outstanding two tranches of the Earned Academic Allowances (EAA) have not been released; and nothing has since happened on the promised support for amendment to the Law of the National Universities Commission (NUC) to stem the tide of proliferation of universities especially by the State Governments.”

Conclusion: Though Prof Nimi Briggs-led committee had concluded its work and submitted a report to the government for action, there is however no evidence that the report has been signed and implemented.

Also, considering the magnitude of issues that led to the ASUU strikes, Daily Trust can confirm that the claim by FG that it had met 80 per cent of ASUU’s demands is misleading. Reports attest to the fact that the issues had been largely unaddressed.

FACT CHECK: Is Cameroon’s Senate President, Marcel Niat, Atiku Abubakar’s Elder Brother?

By Fact ChecksNo Comments
Source: AfricaNews

CLAIM: Cameroon’s senate president is Atiku Abubakar’s elder brother

VERDICT: False

CLAIM: A screenshot has been making the rounds on social media claiming that the presidential candidate of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Alhaji Atiku Abubakar’s elder brother is Cameroon’s senate president, Marcel Niat Njifenji. The image had the caption, “Nigeria for Nigerians, never again will a foreigner rule this country.”

Accompanying write-ups on the image read,

“The man with white cap is the Senate President of CAMEROON.”

“THIS IS ATIKU ABUBAKAR ELDER BROTHER AND HIS THE SENATE PRESIDENT IN THE CAMEROON SENIOR PARLIAMENT.”

FACT-CHECKING PROCESS: A close look at the write-up on the screenshot reveals another layer of writing, “since 1980” under the letters typed in upper case. This discovery already casted doubt as to the authenticity of the claim.

This is because further research on Cameroon as a country showed that, though it got her independence from France in 1960, the Senate was created in 1996 after an amendment to the constitution.

However, power to convene the Electoral College and call elections for the Senate remained with the President. President Paul Biya chose not to do so until he signed decree 2013/056 on 27 February 2013, which set 14 April as the election date. Marcel Niat Njifenji was elected as President of the Senate on 12 June 2013 and is still in office after winning a reelection on March 18, 2021.

Is Marcel Atiku’s Brother?

Marcel Niat Njifenji was born in Bangangté, located in Cameroon’s West Region. Bangangté is a town and commune in Cameroon. It is the capital of the Ndé division of West Region. The town is primarily inhabited by the people of the Bamiléké tribe.

On the other hand, Atiku Abubakar was born in Jada, a village which was then under the administration of the British Cameroons – the territory later joined with the Federation of Nigeria in 1961 British Cameroons referendum.

His father, Garba Abubakar, was a Fulani trader and farmer, and his mother was Aisha Kande. His grandfather, Atiku Abdulqadir hails from Wurno, Sokoto state and migrated to Kojoli village at Jada, Adamawa state, while his maternal grandfather, Inuwa Dutse migrated to Jada, Adamawa State from Dutse, Jigawa state.

He became the only child of his parents when his only sister died at infancy.

CONCLUSION: Relying on several sources and available data, CDD can confirm that both claims that Cameroon has had a senate president since 1960 and that Cameroon’s Senate President, Marcel Niat Njifenji is Alhaji Atiku Abubakar’s brother are both false and should be disregarded by the members of the public.

FACT CHECK: Did PDP Win Osun Governorship Election Without a Single Member in State House of Assembly?

By Fact ChecksNo Comments

VERDICT: False.

Claim: CDD spotted a claim on Twitter by a user who claimed that Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) had won the Osun State Governorship election, defeating the incumbent All Progressives Congress (APC), without a Member in the State Assembly. The tweet has already garnered 1,201 retweets, 69 quotes tweets, and 3,412 likes reads

“In Osun, PDP won with no single PDP member in the state assembly. The people voted & waited to count & protect their votes. Indeed the people are the authentic structure.”

Fact Check: CDD fact checkers reviewed the election results of 2019 general elections released by the Independent National Election Commission (INEC).  The 2019 Osun State House of Assembly election was held on March 9, 2019, to elect members of the State House of Assembly. Following the declaration of results, the APC won 23 out of 26 State constituencies, leaving the PDP, with 3 seats.

As at July 16, 2022 when the governorship election in the state was conducted, the PDP had three Honorable Members in the State Assembly. The members include Hon. Adewumi Adeyemi, Hon. Niran Atidade and Hon. Babajide Kofoworola representing; Obokun; Ede South and Ede North Local Government Areas (LGAs).

In conclusion, CDD can reliably confirm that PDP has three members in the Osun State House of Assembly as at the time, the governorship election was conducted. Therefore, the claim is false and should be disregarded. CDD advises Nigerians to be wary of social media posts, especially as we head to the general elections in 2023.

Did Isaac Fayose Narrowly Escape Death From Gun Men?

By Fact Checks, UncategorizedNo Comments

VERDICT:  False

CLAIM:  On August 29, 2022, fact-checkers at the Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD) spotted a claim with the caption “Isaac Fayose, the younger brother to the former Governor of Ekiti State, Ayodele Fayose narrowly escaped death by the whiskers from gunmen attacks along Ife-Ibadan Highway, Gbongan in Osun State.”

FACT: CDD fact-checkers look at asserting the validity of the claim, and reached out to the SP Opalola Yemisi Olawoyin Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO) in Osun state where a press statement which was released on the 30th of August where it was confirmed that no such incident was reported in any part of the State.

The statement further says that “the Command contacted Mr Isaac Fayose to get his perspective on what transpired while he was on transit from Ekiti to Lagos State, He said “at a point after Asejire Dam, towards Ibadan, he saw some travellers make a U-turn for fear of being attacked by presumed Armed Robbers and in his own attempt to make a U-turn, he had a minor accident. He stated further that, he did not see the purported kidnappers, nor was anyone injured nor abducted from the scene.

CONCLUSION: CDD fact-checkers can confirm that the said claim that Isaac Fayose Narrowly escaped death is False

CDD is urging members of the public to verify from certified source before sharing any news report especially, from a random WhatsApp status


FACT CHECK: Is Lagos the Third largest economy in Africa as Shettima claimed?

By Fact ChecksNo Comments

CLAIM: The vice presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) Kashim Shettima has said that the economy of Lagos State is the third largest on the African continent.

The governor stated this on Monday in Lagos during the ongoing Annual General Assembly of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA).

Verification: Available statistics from the presidency and the Lagos state government have shown that Lagos is the 5th largest economy in Africa.

For instance, in a statement in February 2021 Special Adviser to President Muhammadu Buhari on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, said, “One of the significant ways in which our support has manifested to Lagos is in the special federal funding that we approved in 2020 in acknowledgement of the state being an epicentre of the coronavirus pandemic.

“The challenges of Lagos must therefore be seen as part of the challenges of Nigeria. Therefore, the Federal Government will support Lagos to overcome its challenges and to thrive socially and economically.

“The Presidential Infrastructure Development Fund (PIDF) is investing in the reconstruction of the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, while the Apapa-Oshodi-Oworonshoki Expressway is a flagship project of our Road Infrastructure Tax Credit Scheme, also known as Executive Order 7 of 2019.

“This administration also gave approval for Lagos to rebuild the International Airport Road, a major road that links the busiest airport in Sub-Saharan Africa to the continent’s fifth-largest economy (Lagos).”

Similarly, in a tweet on January 23, 2019, Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwolu said, “the economy of Lagos is adjudged to be the 5th largest in Africa.”

He said his administration’s goal is to make the economy grow exponentially by making it a 24hr economy.

“We will put security and other factors in place to help us achieve this,” he added.

In the same vein, a report by BusinessDay in February 2022 noted that Lagos remains the top investment destination in Africa and the 4th largest economy on the continent in terms of Gross Domestic Product.

Consequently, Daily Trust sought to speak to the Lagos State Commissioner for information, Mr. Gbenga Omotosho, on the claim but he did not answer our correspondent’s calls to his mobile.

Conclusion: Although the Lagos State government has been making promises to grow the economy to become the third largest in Africa, there is no evidence to show the feat has been attained. As such, the claim by Shettima is unverifiable.

FACT CHECK: Did William Ruto Win the Recent Election with a Newly Formed Party?

By Fact ChecksNo Comments

CLAIM: William Ruto, president-elect Kenya won the recent election with a newly formed party.

VERDICT: False

CONTEXT: A post being shared on social media states that the newly elected President of Kenya, William Ruto won the election despite forming a new party and not having any support from powerful men but the youth. The post further said

“Don’t listen to them that say your vote won’t count, let’s take back our country from these old evil men using 18 billion just to clear farmland.”

VERIFICATION:

Fact check by the CDD revealed that William Ruto did not win under a newly formed party as suggested by the post.

However, his political career on Wikipedia states that he won under a new party and that may have misled many to assume that the United Democratic Alliance Kenya is a new party formed by Ruto which is not correct.

Ruto indeed won the election under the United Democratic Alliance (UDA). Which is a Kenyan political party initially called the Party of Development and Reforms which was created in February 2012 and was changed to UDA in December 2020 and became notable in January 2021.

Conclusion: CDD fact-checkers can confirm that the claim suggesting William Ruto won under a newly formed party is misleading.

FACT CHECK: Buhari Not First to Introduce Same Faith Leadership in Nigeria

By Fact ChecksNo Comments

CLAIM: Top two government leaders of the same faith can be traced to the then-military regime of Muhammed Buhari (1983 – 1985)

VERDICT: False

CONTEXT: Bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Sokoto, Rev. Fr. Mathew Kukah, said precedence for the current Muslim-Muslim ticket of the All Progressives Congress (APC) could be traced to the legacy of Muhammadu Buhari when he was military head of state.

Bishop Kukah stated this when he appeared on Politics Today, a programme on Channels Television, on Thursday, to discuss the state of the nation ahead of the 2023 general elections.

VERIFICATION: In verifying Bishop Kukah’s claim, Daily Trust traced the origin of the same faith rule/regime to the military era. Both Maj-Gen. J.T.U Aguiyi-Ironsi and his deputy, Brig. Babafemi Ogundipe (Jan – Jul 1966) were Christians. Similarly, both Gen. Yakubu Gowon and his deputy, Vice-Admiral Joseph Edet Wey (1966 – 1975) were also Christians. The military regime of Maj-Gen Muhammadu Buhari and Maj-Gen Tunde Idiagbon, while being the first both led by Muslims, was only the third same-faith leadership pairing in Nigerian history.

CONCLUSION: Daily Trust was able to establish those previous military regimes before then Maj-Gen Buhari had same faith tickets. As such the claim by Bishop Kukah that Buhari initiated the same-faith leadership is wrong.

FACT CHECK: Did Ruto Lack a Political Structure Like Peter Obi as Claimed?

By Fact ChecksNo Comments
Source: Daily Trust

CLAIM: Kenyan President-Elect, William Ruto, didn’t have a political structure just like Nigerian Labour Party presidential nominee Peter Obi.

VERDICT: False

CONTEXT:

While comparing Kenyan President-Elect William Ruto with Nigeria’s Labour Party presidential nominee, Peter Obi, a twitter account owned by the username, Prof. Chris  Mustapha Nwaokobia Jnr, on Tuesday tweeted,

“Those betting on the sustenance of the OLD should X-ray the victory of the STRUCTURE-LESS Ruto over the STRUCTURE-FULL Odinga in Kenya. Africa is Rising and Nigeria MUST Rise. WE MOVE, WE WIN.”

VERIFICATION:

In verifying the claim, our partners at Daily Trust considered that Ruto’s political party structure, The United Democratic Alliance (UDA), is one of the founding parties of the Kenya Kwanza Alliance, a new alliance formed and registered in January 2021.

Also, we considered the number of political offices held. Ruto was a member of parliament from 1998 to 2013, served as minister for home affairs in the Moi administration (August – December  2002), minister of agriculture in the Kibaki administration (2008 – 2010) and minister for higher education (April – October  2010). He was also elected as deputy president with incumbent President Uhuru Kenyatta in 2013 and will succeed his boss when he is sworn in later this year.

CONCLUSION: Having reviewed Ruto’s political journey and sustained prominence in appointed and elective positions, it is misleading to say that he doesn’t have a political structure as claimed by Prof. Nwaokobia Jnr. 

INFORMATIONS FALLACIEUSES EN AFRIQUE DE L’OUEST – FLUX, FACILITATEURS ET IMPACTS

By Fact Check, Fake NewsNo Comments

Jamie Hitchen et Idayat Hassan – June 2022

Le phénomène de propagation des informations mensongères à travers les écosystèmes d’informations en Afrique de l’Ouest s’amplifie. Bien que rendu possible par l’accès croissant aux réseaux sociaux et à Internet dans la région, le flux d’informations fallacieuses n’est pas simplement limité aux espaces en ligne, mais circule entre les environnements hors ligne et numériques, et ce, régulièrement et facilement. Ainsi, dès qu’une rumeur est lancée par un influenceur en ligne sur Facebook et qu’elle devient une tendance, cette rumeur peut faire l’objet de débats et de discussions dans des émissions de télévision ou de radio, ce qui élargit son audience. Ces débats, à leur tour, font ensuite l’objet de discussions et de débats dans des lieux de rassemblement tels que les marchés, les bases des atayahs, les lieux de rassemblement des motos-taxis ou les grins1 qui leur permettent de circuler à travers des réseaux bien établis de rumeurs par le bouche- à-oreille. Pour compléter le cycle, ces rumeurs hors ligne peuvent ensuite être transposées en ligne et peuvent être davantage biaisées dans le but de désinformer ou simplement de renforcer une information mensongère déjà en circulation.

La manière dont les informations circulent entre les réseaux en ligne et hors ligne permettent de mieux comprendre comment les informations fallacieuses se propagent et influencent les actions en Afrique de l’Ouest. Il en va de même pour la confiance. L’information que l’on considère comme provenant d’une source digne de confiance – que ce soit la source d’origine de l’information ou la personne qui l’a partagée en dernier – est essentielle pour déterminer ce qui est vrai ou faux, et si cette information se conforme à des idées reçues et à des préjugés existants. Ces deux critères deviennent de plus en plus évidents pour tous ceux qui participent à la Les études par pays ont identifié sept acteurs clés impliqués dans la diffusion d’informations mensongères et leurs effets dans les domaines de la politique, de la santé et de la cohésion sociale. Ces acteurs sont des militants politiques, des influenceurs en ligne, l’État, des entreprises médiatiques, des sociétés de conseil spécialisées, la diaspora et des États étrangers. Si le rapport entre la propriété des médias et la politique en Afrique de l’Ouest a toujours favorisé la circulation d’informations fallacieuses, le nombre croissant d’utilisateurs des réseaux sociaux dans la région donne une place privilégiée aux influenceurs en ligne et à la diaspora qui dispose d’une audience numérique importante et souvent réceptive. Pendant les élections, la lutte pour exercer une influence sur ce public en ligne est amplifiée, les acteurs politiques recrutant de plus en plus de « cyber- guerriers » nationaux ou de spécialistes de la communication régionale et internationale pour obtenir un avantage électoral.

Les réponses au phénomène grandissant de la prolifération des informations fallacieuses dans l’écosystème de l’information rencontrent des difficultés du fait que non seulement l’État n’est pas un acteur impartial, mais qu’il participe également à la diffusion et à la création d’informations mensongères ou dans la restriction égoïste des flux d’information en ligne. Néanmoins, il existe également des exemples d’interventions gouvernementales plus bénéfiques sur le plan social dans l’écosystème de l’information. Pendant la pandémie de la Covid-19, on a observé des exemples de pays qui faisaient des efforts pour rendre plus transparentes les informations sur les initiatives de santé publique.

Veuillez liser l’article entier ci-dessous

FACT CHECK: Are Nigerian Universities Better Than Their Foreign Counterparts?

By Fact ChecksNo Comments

CLAIM: Nigerian universities are better than their foreign counterparts.

VERDICT: FALSE

CONTEXT: The senior special assistant to the president on media and publicity, Mallam Garba Shehu, stated his belief that Nigeria’s universities are good enough and even better than their foreign counterparts. While commenting at the graduation of Glisten International Academy Abuja, Mallam Shehu, who was also a parent of a graduate, asserted his belief that ‘Nigerian universities are equally as good and even better than foreign institutions.

VERIFICATION: Nigerian universities do not feature highly on all university rankings. Most of these rankings use various criteria, including teaching, research capacity, international diversity, sustainable funding and alumni stature. Most rankings place the highest ranked Nigerian universities in the 1001-1250 category, which is well below the top spots that are occupied by foreign universities.

Sadly, most universities in Nigeria are public-owned and affected by strikes carried out by the Academic Staff Union of Universities.

WHY WE FACT CHECKED THIS: This claim was fact-checked to provide facts to claims made by public office holders to improve the reputation of their office.

FACT CHECK: Does Elon Musk Own A Hotel in Mars?

By Fact Check, Fake NewsNo Comments

Verdict: False

CLAIM: CDD spotted a trending story online, that Elon Musk, the entrepreneur who achieved global fame as the chief executive officer (CEO) of electric autos maker Tesla Inc. (TSLA) and CEO of the private space company is set to unveil his new hotel in Mars. The story on social media and blogs claimed that the world’s richest man is set to open soon his latest investment, a hotel, in Mars. According to the message with the accompanied image claimed a night rate at the hotel will be $5 million.

Fact Check: In verifying the claim, we verified the image using the fact checking tool, Tineye; a reverse image search engine that allows one to search by image. The result revealed that the image was first uploaded online by venturebeat.com as a proposed model of lab biomes Interstellar, which is expected to be built on Mojave Desert, Mars. The website has a trailer video of Interstellar Labs future, where the image appeared.

However, Elon Musk Trust is the owner of SpaceX, a Space Exploration Technologies Corp, which became famous after it first big headline, when it became the first private company to launch a payload into orbit and return it to Earth intact—something only government agencies like NASA or Russia’s Roscosmos had done before.  In 2020 Musk claimed that SpaceX will put a million people on Mars by 2050, there has been no recent claim of this on Elon’s official twitter page or on trustworthy news site.  Since its first crewed flight in 2020, SpaceX has continued to launch astronauts to the International Space Station and return them home to Earth as part of a partnership with NASA.

Fact checkers searched through Elon Musk’s social media and information platforms, including his verified Twitter account, with 102.7 million followers and cannot find any post relating to an hotel in Mars. 

Source: CDD West Africa

In conclusion, we can confirm that the posts and reports claiming that Elon Musk will soon open a hotel in Mars, which is expected to cost $5 million a night is false. With this check, CDD continues to provide the global community with facts to make informed choices; therefore, advises citizens against peddling false information.

FACT CHECK: Is Peter Obi’s Claim that Nigeria Has About 100 Players in NBA True?

By Fact Check, Fake NewsNo Comments

CLAIM: Peter Obi claimed that Nigeria has about 100 players in NBA.

VERDICT: False

Peter Obi. Photo/Facebook/

CONTEXT: Responding to a question posed during an interview on Politics Today, a Programme on Channels Television, the Labour Party presidential candidate replying to  a question on why he is focused on supporting the youth, said

“…proud, celebrating their talent. And this is what we have everywhere. If you go into the American NBA, out of 150 players, almost 100 are Nigerians. These youths are so talented that they are where you need to focus to reach their talent and productive energy to turn around the country…” 

VERIFICATION: Our partners at Daily Trust have clarified where the misconception behind this claim might have come from. Teams in the U.S invite unregistered or young players, referred to as rookies, to their training camps so that the coaching staff can evaluate their performance and select their active roster. However, actual registered NBA players are restricted to 15 players on each of the 30 teams which adds up to 450 players, of which Nigeria only has 10.

Relying on available data, we can confirm that Nigeria does not have about 100 players in the NBA as claimed by Peter Obi. In fact, no country or continent has produced up to that number since the inception of the league. Therefore, the claim by Obi is false in its entirety.

Source: CDD West Africa

WHY WE FACT-CHECKED THIS:  Several presidential candidates have been peddling fake news in a bid to support their campaign. This claim was fact-checked to provide facts to Nigerian citizens.

FACT CHECK: Did Members of the PDP’s Executive Committee in Kwara State Decamp to APC?

By Fact Check, Fake NewsNo Comments

CLAIM: All executive members of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Kwara State have defected to the APC.

VERDICT: False

CONTEXT: A twitter account, purportedly belonging to the All Progressives Congress (APC) Kwara State chapter, tweeted that all executive members of the state opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) had defected to their party.

Source: Twitter

VERIFICATION: Our partners at Daily Trust could not find the names of said PDP decampees on the aforementioned Twitter handle. Furthermore, findings showed that although some former executive members of the Peoples Democratic Party defected to the All Progressives Congress. in June 2022, none of them was a current member of the party’s state. The decampees cited the achievements of Gov. AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq as the rationale behind their defection.

Source: CDD West Africa

Most of the decampees during that period were members of the Kwara State PDP Transformation Movement a group formed with the aim of fighting for the right of PDP members who are thought to be maltreated by the party which included former executives of the opposition party and former political office holders.