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Did a popular Kenyan blogger say president William Ruto was exposing opposition leader Raila Odinga’s hunger for power? No, viral tweet from impostor account

IN SHORT: The tweet in a screenshot says Kenyan opposition leader Raila Odinga will be exposed by the government for using protests as a means of obtaining power in the peace talks. But the tweet was not published by government critic and opposition supporter Pauline Njoroge.

Kenyan president William Ruto is using the ongoing peace talks between his government and the opposition to expose Raila Odinga’s hunger for power.

At least, that's what a screenshot of a tweet circulating on Facebook since July 2023 claims.

The tweet seems to have come from the Twitter (or X) account of Pauline Njoroge, a popular Kenyan blogger and an outspoken government critic. Her social media posts have previously landed her in court.

“I think President Ruto and Kenya Kwanza are exposing Raila Odinga and Azimio. If the talks which will be led with ex-Nigerian Pres. Olusegun Obasan will miss The Finance act 2023 and Cost of living, Raila will be exposed as using Maandamano as a means of getting to Power only,” the tweet reads

Maandamano is Kiswahili for protests.

Odinga is the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) party leader. The ODM is one of the parties in the Azimio La Umoja-One Kenya coalition, also led by Odinga. 

Odinga lost the 9 August 2022 election to Ruto, who leads the Kenya Kwanza (Kenya First) alliance. This was Odinga’s fifth unsuccessful run for the presidency. He has rejected the results, saying Ruto's government is illegitimate

Odinga has been leading nationwide protests in 2023, mainly over the high cost of living and tax hikes contained in the Finance Act 2023. The law, which was signed in June, is aimed at facilitating the collection of government revenue and is being implemented after a court battle. 

The government claims Odinga’s grievances are not sincere as all he  wants is a power-sharing agreement. The government is in talks with the opposition, under the guidance of former Nigerian president Olusegun Obasanjo.

The screenshot has been posted here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here.

But did Pauline Njoroge suggest that Odinga is power hungry, suggesting the influential blogger is switching alliances? We checked.


Tweet from imposter ‘parody’ account

Africa Check searched Twitter for the tweet in the screenshot and found it, published on 29 July. But while the account uses the name “Pauline’ Njoroge, HCS” and her photo, its handle is “@KenyanSays”. 

It was created in January 2022 and has 11,600 followers. It includes “Parody= Fan account” in its description, though we could not confirm when this was added.

Njoroge’s official Twitter account is verified and has the handle @paulinenjoroge. It was created in February 2011 and she has 413,300 followers. No such tweet exists on the verified account.

The tweet in the screenshot tweet is from an imposter account.

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