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After ICIR’s factcheck, Okonjo-Iweala admits to tweeting wrong photograph

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AFTER a factcheck by The ICIR on Wednesday, former Nigerian Minister of Finance, Ngozi Okonjo – Iweala has admitted to have tweeted a wrong photograph to illustrate the distribution of food items by Rwandan government under President Paul Kagame among low-income households in the country amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Okojo – Iweala, an influential personality in global economic and financial circles, via her verified Twitter handle and Facebook page shared the photo with the caption: “Responsible food distribution with social distancing to assist lower-income households in the #COVID19 era! A great example from #Rwanda where community workers also distribute food and other necessities door-to-door.”

The former minister’s post was seen as a subtle criticism of the distribution of food and money by governments in Nigeria, which many believe negates the social distancing advice recommended by medical experts to help stop the spread of the coronavirus.

However, a factcheck by The ICIR revealed that the picture was indeed from 2019 and was taken in The Gambia when a Gambian Islamic leader shared food items to Islamic faithful in his area.

After the publication, the former Nigerian Coordinating Minister of Economy tweeted to thank those who called her attention to the wrong picture.

She claimed that a friend sent her the picture that it was from Rwanda.

Thanks to those who have drawn my attention to the food distribution picture I tweeted earlier today. A friend sent it to me that it’s from Rwanda. Whether Gambia or Rwanda, the point I want us to focus on is that it is a safe way of handling food distribution,” she tweeted.

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Okonjo-Iweala is a member of Board of Directors of Twitter. She was appointed in 2018.

Author profile

Abeeb Alawiye formerly works with The ICIR as a Reporter/Social Media officer. Now work as a Senior Journalist with BBC News Yoruba. You can shoot him an email via Abeeb.alawiye@bbc.co.uk or follow him on Twitter @habsonfloww

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