THE Nigerian Fact-checkers’ Coalition (NFC) brings you live checks of election-related misinformation and disinformation spreading online and on television on the day before the November 11, 2023, off-cycle election in Imo, Kogi and Bayelsa states.
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@McGingerIbeneme, an account on X (formerly Twitter), in now-deleted footage, posted a video marked with the logo and branding of TVC News indicating that the governorship candidate of the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) in Imo state, Senator Samuel Anyanwu, has withdrawn from the race and asked his supporters to vote for the candidate of All Progressives Congress, Hope Uzodinma.
FINDING: An analysis of the video reveals that the footage has been manipulated. The audio in the video doesn’t match the lip movements of the individuals speaking –a common feature in deepfake videos. TVC News has also denied broadcasting the video and clarified that it is fake. Checks show that Mr Anyanwu debunked the footage via his verified Facebook P rofile and clarified that he is “fully still in the race”.
SOURCES: TVC News, Senator Samuel Anyanwu
Claim: A Facebook user, Muhammad B. Muhammad, claimed that the chairman of Lokoja LGA, Hon Muhammed Danasabe, died hours before the start of the Kogi governorship election. He said the politician was holding a meeting in the Kogi state government house yesterday when he complained of stomach ache, after which he was rushed to the hospital.
FINDING: Talba Lakwaja, the All Progressive Congress (APC) Public Relations Officer in Lokoja, confirmed the incident to Premium Times. He revealed that he slumped at his residence after a stakeholder meeting with party members at the Kogi government house on Thursday. The deceased was rushed to Shifa Hospital, where he was pronounced dead early Friday.
SOURCE: Premium Times
Claim: A viral video shared by “Area Papa Comedy” on Facebook on Nov. 9, 2023, claimed that there was war in Imo state a few hours before the governorship election.
FINDING: In a press conference broadcast on Arise News TV, Deputy Inspector General of Police Frank Mba said, “Imo is not a war zone, Imo is not on fire,” while asking the media and other stakeholders to fact-check fake news. Also, there was no media report about war in Imo state at 7:00PM on Friday.
SOURCES: Deputy Inspector General of Police, Frank Mba
CLAIM: Governor Hope Uzodinma of Imo State said, “When I came in 2020, we had an internally generated revenue profile of less than N500 million.”
FINDING: Internally generated revenue for states published by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) shows that Imo state’s internally generated revenue in 2019 was N16.095 billion, an average of N1.34 billion monthly. Between October and December 2019, the state generated N2.99 billion, an average of N996.67 million. It generated N3.08 billion from January to March 2020, an average of N1.03 billion monthly.
CLAIM: A Twitter user, @PO_GrassRootM, claims the PDP Chairman in Bayelsa, Bara Daniel, suffered a head injury after brutalisation by APC thugs over election materials.
FINDING: News reports from Punch and Daily Trust confirmed a clash between the Peoples’ Democratic Party and All People’s Congress in Twon-Brass jetty of Brass Local Government Area (LGA) over where election materials should be kept.
This led to the head injury sustained by the PDP Chairman Bara Daniel, but the assailant was not linked to any party.
VERDICT: PARTLY CORRECT
SOURCES: Punch and Daily Trust newspapers
CLAIM: In a conversation with Arise TV, the immediate-past commissioner for information and strategy in Abia, Eze Chikamnayo, asserted that the Labour Party (LP) did not carry out primary elections for the 2023 Abia state gubernatorial election.
FINDING: According to ThisDay and The Guardian newspapers, Alex Otti secured the ticket of the Labour Party through a primary election held in Umuahia on June 8, 2022. Innocent Okeke acted as the Returning Officer. Mr Otti got 454 votes to become the candidate of the Labour Party for the 2023 Abia governorship election.
SOURCES: ThisDay and The Guardian.
This live-check was jointly researched and written by members of the Nigerian Fact-Checkers’ Coalition (NFC): Nurudeen Akewushola, Fatimah Quadri (FactCheckHub); Rosemary Ajayi (Digital Africa Research Lab); Daniel Adaji, Farida Salifu (NatureNews); Elizabeth Ogunbamowo, Lois Ugbede, Cole Praise, Temilade Onilede, Lateef Sanni, Sunday Awosoro, Philip Anjorin, Lade Aborisade, Maxine Danso (Dubawa); Catherine Adeniyi, Allwell Okpi, Fatimah Abubakar, Muktar Balogun, Semilore Adelola, Denzel Amobi, (Africa Check); Faruk Shuaibu (Daily Trust); Rejoice Ewodage, Hannah Ajakaiye (FactsMatterNG); Claire Mom (The Cable); Temiloluwa Erinle, Alefia Friday James, Muyiwa Adekojede (RoundCheck); Theophilus Adedokun; Shehu Olayinka, Blessing Otoibhi (ICIR).
It was edited and approved for publication by Kemi Busari, Simbiat Bakare (Dubawa), Motunrayo Joel, David Ajikobi (Africa Check), Ajibola Amzat (CCIJ), Opeyemi Kehinde (FactCheckHub) and Bamas Victoria (ICIR).