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Former Kenyan president Kenyatta moving out of State House amid election challenge in 2022? No, photo from 2013, when Kenyatta moved in

IN SHORT: As Raila Odinga, ally of Kenya’s fourth president Uhuru Kenyatta, was challenging the election win of confirmed fifth president William Ruto, a photo appeared online with the claim it showed Kenyatta moving out of the presidential residence. But the photo was snapped nine years ago, when Kenyatta first moved into State House.

William Ruto, Kenya’s fifth president, was sworn in on 13 September 2022. He replaced Uhuru Kenyatta, the country’s fourth president, who had served two five-year terms since 2013.

Kenyatta, in turn, replaced third president Mwai Kibaki, who was in office from 2002 to 2013.

Days before Ruto’s inauguration, a photo of a Cube Movers truck with soldiers and suited men standing around it started circulating online.

It was posted with the claim it was taken at State House, Kenya’s presidential residence, and the truck was there to move Kenyatta out.

“This is STATE HOUSE,” reads one caption to the photo, posted on 4 September. “It has FINALLY DAWNED on UHURU KENYATTA that he has to agree with CUBE MOVERS on MOVING WITHOUT TEARS!!”

Cube Movers’ slogan is “Move without tears.” 

But the caption may also refer to the petition against the 9 August election results by Kenyatta’s ally Raila Odinga, Ruto’s main rival for the presidency. On 5 September, the supreme court rejected Odinga’s petition.

“Pale State House kuna mtu anahama,” another of the photo’s captions reads, in Kiswahili. This translates as: “It looks like someone is moving house at State House.” 

Kenyatta has indeed moved out of State House. But does the photo really show the move in progress?


Photo snapped on day of Kenyatta’s first inauguration

The photo does show a Cube Movers truck at State House – but in 2013, not 2022.

A search of the moving company’s official Facebook page reveals the photo was posted there on 9 April 2013, when Kenyatta was sworn in for his first term in office.

“So proud to be part of this amazing day #inagurationke here is one of our trucks leaving state house,” the post reads.

Another online search returned a different photo of the same scene on 9 April 2013.

Larry Madowo, then an NTV Kenya journalist who now works at CNN, tweeted a shot of two Cube Movers trucks, with this caption: “Moving company trucks leaving State House Nairobi ahead of Uhuru Kenyatta's inauguration.”



The photo was taken in April 2013, when Kenyatta took over the Kenyan presidency from Kibaki.

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