IN SHORT: Sometimes our attempts to debunk false Facebook pages and fake loan offers feel futile. But when we spotted the same phone number used on a page we debunked just a week ago, we knew this one in Rachel Ruto’s name was fake too.
The Facebook account Rejel Ruto claims to offer Inua Jamii loans to Kenyans on Facebook.
The account uses the name – although wrongly spelled - of Rachel Ruto, the wife of Kenyan president William Ruto. It also features a logo that says “INUA JAMII PROGRAM”.
Inua Jamii – Kiswahili for “uplift the community” – is a Kenyan government programme that gives cash grants to poor and vulnerable people.
One of its posts reads: “Good morning and congratulations kwa Wale ambao walipokea loan. Kama uko online na hukupokea loan Kutoka INUA JAMII promotion from ksh 75,000/ na uko online Sasa tuma neno #promotion kwa 0783305257 kwa njia ya SMS ama whatsapp Kwa 0715875561.”
This mix of English and Kiswahili translates as: “Good morning and congratulations to those who received their loans. If you are online now and did not receive KSh75,000 loan from Inua Jamii promotion, send the word “promotion” through direct messaging to 0783305257 or to the WhatsApp number 0715875561.”
It claims that loans for business, personal use, school fee and emergency are available.
But is the account and its loan offers legit? We checked.
Fake Facebook account
The account’s misspelling of Ruto’s name is the first red flag. Her first name is Rachel and not “Rejel”.
Her official Facebook page, Mama Rachel Ruto, is verified and has over 982,000 followers. Besides, it does not offer loans.
It is unlikely that Ruto would operate two Facebook accounts and dedicate the unverified one to loans.
The account tells users to reach out to a phone number for the loan offers.
But here Africa Check spotted a big warning flag. We’d seen the phone number before in a different fake Facebook page that we debunked earlier in April 2023.
That page was impersonating Kenyan president Ruto and, when we messaged the number, told us to deposit KSh399 to be considered for the loans.
The Inua Jamii programme has clarified that it does not issue loans but rather gives out cash grants to the poor and vulnerable. No loan offers are posted on the programme’s official Facebook page.
The account in Rachel Ruto’s name and its loan offers are fake.
To protect yourself against scams, see our guide to Facebook scams and how to spot them.
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