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No, footballer Cristiano Ronaldo hasn’t endorsed Nigerian President Buhari’s election bid

The Facebook page I Stand with Buhari has made a surprising claim: football superstar Cristiano Ronaldo has endorsed President Muhammadu Buhari’s bid for a second term in Nigeria’s upcoming elections.

The post reads: “JUST IN: Ronaldo adopts NEXT LEVEL” – the theme of Buhari’s re-election campaign. Then a quote: “‘The world leaders adores PMB, He must be a good man’ - Ronaldo.”

It includes a photo of Ronaldo wearing the traditional dress of the Hausa people of northern Nigeria, with the inscription #iStandwithBuhari2019.

The post was published on 2 February 2019 and within two days had been shared over 1,400 times. It has also attracted more than 1,000 reactions and 130 comments.

Ronaldo photo altered by graphics firm

But the photo of Ronaldo has been manipulated. It was produced by FYB Craft, a Lagos-based graphics design firm, as part of its marketing strategy. One of FYB Craft’s recent graphics is a photo of FC Barcelona captain Lionel Messi wearing Yoruba attire.

“It was all created for fun and to explore our graphics work,” Olawale Ezekiel, admin manager at FYB Craft, told Africa Check. “We do not know about it” – the fake post – “and of course it is a false rumour.”

He is a favourite: four years ago, Ronaldo was also used in a fake endorsement of former president Goodluck Jonathan’s bid for re-election. – Allwell Okpi (05/02/19)


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