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Kenya unveils ‘world’s most foolish person’? No, Taifa Leo newspaper’s front page altered

Kenya’s Kiswahili-language Taifa Leo tabloid has announced the most foolish person in the world.

The news appears on what seems to be the front page of the newspaper’s 2 February 2022 edition, circulating on Facebook. It’s also doing the rounds on WhatsApp.

The headline reads: “Kenya yazindua mtu mjinga zaidi duniani.” That translates as: “Kenya unveils the world’s most foolish person.”

It shows a large photo of Kalonzo Musyoka, leader of the Wiper Democratic Movement political party.

Text above the headline reads: “Chaguzi za urais tangu 2002 zawapa vigogo wakuu nafasi kubwa ya kuingia ikulu Agosti”. Translation: “Presidential elections since 2002 give senior officials a great chance to enter State House in August.” Kenya is set to hold elections on 9 August.

Taifa Leo is known for its bold headlines, but was the front page of its 2 February issue really this striking? We checked.  


‘History gives Ruto, Raila 50:50 chance’

Africa Check searched for the front page of the 2 February issue on the newspaper’s Facebook page and found it – and it is completely different.

The original headline reads “Historia yawafaa Ruto, Raila 50:50”, which means “History gives Ruto, Raila 50:50 chance”. William Ruto is Kenya’s deputy president and a possible candidate for the presidency in the elections.

The main image on the real front page shows Kenyan opposition politician Raila Odinga, another presidential candidate, and Ruto on a weighing scale, not Musyoka.

On 3 February, Taifa Leo posted the fake front page on Facebook and Twitter, stamped “FEKI” – “FAKE”.



“TAHADHARI: Mpenzi msomaji wa gazeti la Taifa Leo, kichwa hiki cha habari kinachoenezwa mitandaoni ni feki,” it wrote

“Tunaomba ukipuuze. Tunajitahidi kukabiliana na usambazaji wa habari feki. Tunachapisha vichwa vyetu kila siku katika akaunti zetu za mitandao ya kijamii kati ya saa mbili na saa nne usiku. Vinginevyo, endelea kufurahia habari, makala na taarifa za kuelimisha na kuburudisha za Taifa Leo.”

This translates as: “CAUTION: Dear reader of the Taifa Leo newspaper, this headline being circulated online is fake. Please ignore it. We strive to curb the spread of false information. We publish our headlines daily on our social media platforms between eight and 10 pm. Continue to enjoy the news, articles, and informative and entertaining information from Taifa Leo.”

The front page of Taifa Leo’s 2 February front page circulating on Facebook and WhatsApp is doctored.

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