Back to Africa Check

No, photo of ‘poor’ kids in class not from Kenya’s Pokot region

The Pokot community in the North Rift region of Kenya is considered marginalised, according to the recent Baringo Inquiry by Kenya’s human rights commission.

The report revealed what it called the “collapse of the education system in parts of North Rift particularly Tiaty sub-county, Pokot North and Pokot Central”. The plight of school children in Tiaty has been reported in Kenya’s news media.

It is against this backdrop that a Facebook user posted a photo on a group page with 1.98 million members. It shows semi-clothed children sitting at desks in a classroom.

“When your kid has uniform, books, food and transport, in Tiaty, East Pokot, other proud Kenyans are also studying. Don't mind attire but the brain,” he captioned the image.

The post was shared almost 30 times, generated 30 comments and had some 150 reactions.

Photo traced to Ethiopia

A reverse image search reveals the photo was first published online in 2014. It was taken by French photographer Eric Lafforgue.

Africa Check contacted Lafforgue who confirmed that he had shot the photo, which is of kids from an Ethiopian community.

“You are right. This is Turmi in Ethiopia and those are Hamer tribe kids,” he said. Turmi, a town in south-western Ethiopia, is home to the Hamer people.

The photo is one of a series he took while in the country. It bears no relation to a community in Kenya.

According to Lafforgue’s website, he works with publications such as National Geographic, Der Spiegel, Le Monde, Lonely Planet, Times and Grands Reportages. – Dancan Bwire (14/03/2019)


Republish our content for free

We believe that everyone needs the facts.

You can republish the text of this article free of charge, both online and in print. However, we ask that you pay attention to these simple guidelines. In a nutshell:

1. Do not include images, as in most cases we do not own the copyright.

2. Please do not edit the article.

3. Make sure you credit "Africa Check" in the byline and don't forget to mention that the article was originally published on

For publishers: what to do if your post is rated false

A fact-checker has rated your Facebook or Instagram post as “false”, “altered”, “partly false” or “missing context”. This could have serious consequences. What do you do?

Click on our guide for the steps you should follow.

Publishers guide

Africa Check teams up with Facebook

Africa Check is a partner in Meta's third-party fact-checking programme to help stop the spread of false information on social media.

The content we rate as “false” will be downgraded on Facebook and Instagram. This means fewer people will see it.

You can also help identify false information on Facebook. This guide explains how.

Add new comment

Restricted HTML

  • Allowed HTML tags: <a href hreflang> <em> <strong> <cite> <blockquote cite> <code> <ul type> <ol start type> <li> <dl> <dt> <dd> <h2 id> <h3 id> <h4 id> <h5 id> <h6 id>
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
  • Web page addresses and email addresses turn into links automatically.
limit: 600 characters

Want to keep reading our fact-checks?

We will never charge you for verified, reliable information. Help us keep it that way by supporting our work.

Become a newsletter subscriber

Support independent fact-checking in Africa.