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No evidence influential Nigerian actor Omotola Jalade Ekeinde has backed Labour Party presidential candidate Peter Obi

IN SHORT: A quote doing the rounds on social media in Nigeria suggests Peter Obi, one of Nigeria’s presidential candidates, has bagged the support of an influential actor. But the quote is fabricated.

A Facebook post claims that Nigerian actor Omotola Jalade Ekeinde has said she is backing the Labour Party’s presidential candidate Peter Obi and his running mate Yusuf Datti Baba-Ahmed in the upcoming elections.

Nigerians will choose a new president on 25 February 2023.

The post includes a photo of the actor, and a quote in Nigerian Pidgin which reads: “Party when dey hide palliative indomie no fit see my vote … I stand with obi-datti.”

This translates as: “I am not going to vote for a party that hid Indomie [brand of food] meant for palliative [care] … I stand with Obi-Datti.”

“Obi-Datti” is the campaign tagline for the Labour Party, fusing the names of candidates Obi and Datti. 

During the #Endsars protests in Nigeria in October 2020, food items donated by the Coalition Against Covid-19 (Cacovid) and kept in private and government warehouses in some states in Nigeria were looted. This included food produced by Indomie, a popular brand of instant noodles, rice and garri (cassava root flour). 

The Nigerian government was also accused of hoarding these items, meant to alleviate the economic difficulties caused by the pandemic.

In the quote, the popular Nollywood actor appears to be taking a swipe at the governing All Progressives Congress.

Obi is hoping to succeed incumbent president Muhammadu Buhari of the APC.

The same claim appeared on Facebook here, here and here.

But did Ekeinde declare her support for Obi and the Labour Party? 

Omotola_False

No evidence of quote

The Facebook posts gave no details of when or where the actor was meant to have made this claim. This is often a red flag that a quote circulating on social media has been fabricated.

We could also find no evidence of the statement when we searched through Ekeinde’s verified Instagram and Twitter accounts.

Africa Check then reached out to Ekeinde via her verified Instagram account and the email provided here but we are yet to receive a comment from her. 

There have however been no reports in the local media of Ekeinde saying anything related to Obi. Given she has nearly 7 million followers on Instagram and Twitter, such an endorsement would have been newsworthy.

The quote appears to be fabricated with the hope of influencing or misleading voters in the coming elections.

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