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Free motorbikes from Kenyan lawmaker? No, offer from imposter Facebook account

Kenyan politician Gladys Shollei, member of the national assembly for Uasin Gishu county, is giving away 100 motorbikes “to encourage self-employment to the young generation”. At least, that’s according to two messages posted on the Facebook page “Hon Gladys Shollei” in mid-August 2020.

“My team is distributing 100 motor bikes to Bodaboda to empower the youth as we aim to encourage self-employment to the young generation,” the identically worded messages read.

“Inbox a valid reason of wanting to own one, your full names, ID number, KRA pin, contacts and location where to deliver your motorbikes.” KRA is the Kenya Revenue Authority.

The messages include photos of a row of motorbikes and Shollei sitting on a bike surrounded by boda boda – bike taxi – drivers.

Social media posts that ask for users’ personal details are often attempts at identity theft.

Is this offer legit? We checked.



Identifying an imposter


The “Hon Gladys Shollei” page is an imposter account. Its handle – @kcb.serem – is unrelated to the politician, it has no friends or followers, and its earliest post is from December 2019. 

Shollei’s official Facebook page is “Gladys Boss Shollei”. Its handle is @GBossShollei and it lists her as a “public figure”. The page was created in October 2014 and has more than 44,000 followers.

On 22 August Shollei posted one of the imposter messages on her Facebook page, stamped “FAKE!” in red.

The photos used in the fake posts show Shollei distributing motorbikes to boda boda saccos in July. These are motorcycle savings and credit cooperative societies, also known as “saccos” in Kenya. The donations were to the societies, not individual “youth”.

Be careful of Facebook scams and don’t be conned into providing personal details online. – Grace Gichuhi




 

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