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No, photo doesn’t show police officers guarding December 2022 opposition rally in Nairobi, Kenya

IN SHORT: A photo doing the rounds on social media claims to show police officers guarding rallies held by Kenyan opposition leader Raila Odinga in December 2022. But it has been online for more than five years.

A photo of police officers on all-terrain vehicles is still circulating widely on social media in Kenya.

Facebook users posting the photo claim it shows “some of the over three thousand police officers who have been deployed by the Ministry of Interior to provide tight security to Azimio leader Raila Odinga and his supporters” during demonstrations in December 2022.

The claim, which was published on a Facebook page with 76,000 followers, was also posted to Twitter by the same user.

Odinga is the leader of the Orange Democratic Movement and was the Azimio la Umoja One Kenya coalition’s presidential candidate in the August 2022 general elections.

He lost the election to William Ruto, and also failed with a subsequent court challenge. He has since held rallies he calls “public dialogues”. 

On 7 December Odinga called a rally in the capital Nairobi to protest the issues he has raised against the Kenyan government.

But does this photo show police protecting Odinga’s supporters in December 2022?

PoliceOdinga_False

Reverse image search shows photo from 2017

A TinEye reverse image search reveals that the photo had been online for over five years in December 2022. 

It appeared in an article dated 1 September 2017 published by the Nation newspaper. 

The caption is a bit confusing. It reads: “Police officers around the Supreme Court in Nairobi on September 1, 2017. In Kisumu, [there] has been heavy police deployment ahead of the much-awaited decision on the presidential poll petition filed by Mr Raila Odinga.” 

Odinga was then leader of the National Super Alliance, running for president.

The photo was credited to journalist David Mwere. It was not taken in December 2022.

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