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This photo of road being destroyed is from South Africa and not related to #EndSARS protest

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SEVERAL fake and misleading information has circulated online following the EndSARS protest that rocked Nigeria.

One of such claims is a post shared with The FactCheckHub on October 24, 2020. It shows two images of a tarred road being destroyed by a group of persons destroying Nigerian roads.

One of the images shows an individual holding what looked like a digger, while others stood by watching.

The photograph was attributed to the EndSARS protest, claiming that the protesters were destroying the rods to express their grievances against police brutality and bad governance.

The photo is captioned, “#ENDSARS against the roads. FG, State roads being destroyed. Me: What concerns roads again?”

This image is unrelated to the EndSARS protest in Nigeria.

THE CLAIM:

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That the #EndDSARS protesters destroy a section of a highway to protest police brutality, bad governance in Nigeria.

THE FINDINGS:

The ENDSARS protests erupted in Nigeria in early October across major cities in the country to push for the disbandment of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), a controversial unit in the Nigerian Police Force. The protest was largely championed by young persons.

The SARS unit which focuses on cases of kidnapping, robbery and high profile crimes was repeatedly accused of extortions, extrajudicial killings, corruption and abuse of people’s rights. As a result, the protesters sought a complete overhaul of the force among other demands for a better nation.

Image traced to South Africa

The FactCheckHub check on the image using the Google Reverse Image Search shows that the viral image did not originate from Nigeria but South Africa.

Protesters in South Africa destroy an access road over service delivery. Image via: uMzinyathi District Municipality from The South African.

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The image surfaced on the internet last month- September and the incident was reported by several South African media organisations.

The road being damaged was part of a protest exercise that occurred along the R33 road on September 22.

The R33 road is a major highway in South Africa that stretches through three provinces Limpopo, Mpumalanga and KwaZulu-Natal. It links Pietermaritzburg with Greytown, Paulpietersrburg, Carolina, Belfast and Vaalwater.

The aggrieved demonstrators had protested against poor government performances in providing basic infrastructure such as electricity, water.

Some of the protesters particularly from uMzinyathi District Municipality and Msinga Local Municipality had decried poor access to water.

Nomonde Nzimakwe, Head of Communications for uMzinyathi District confirmed the incident to local newspapers.

Petros Mthandeni Ngubane, Umzinyathi Mayor criticised the actions of the protesters, while noting that “it’s not the mayor’s fault,” that community lacks electricity.

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The South African citizens through the South African Citizen Satisfaction Index (SA-CSI) monitor deliverables of government authorities in comparison with public expectations and executed projects.

THE VERDICT:

The claim that the photo shows #EndDSARS protesters destroying a section of a highway to protest police brutality, bad governance in Nigeria is FALSE. This is because the image is from an unrelated protest in South Africa.

This report was originally published by FactCheckHub

Olugbenga is an Investigative Reporter with The ICIR. Email address: [email protected] Twitter handle: @OluAdanikin

If you or someone you know has a lead, tip or personal experience about this report, our WhatsApp line is open and confidential for a conversation

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