“[T]echnically, fuel prices never went up in the past 25 years,” it reads. “If you go to a garage and ask for fuel for R500, they always give you fuel for R500, people just like complaining.”
But did the deputy transport minister really say fuel prices have not increased in 25 years?
‘Fake news ... old fake news’
So we searched for the text of the quote on Google. This led us to a long Twitter thread by Jean le Roux, a disinformation researcher for the Atlantic Council's Digital Forensic Research Lab, fact-checking it in August 2020.
“Yesterday a screengrab did the rounds attributing a statement to the Dep. Min. of Transport,” Le Roux writes. “This is not only fake news...but old fake news. The website that originally posted the article, run by a former PWC employee, was shutdown almost two years ago.”
Yesterday a screengrab did the rounds attributing a statement to the Dep. Min. of Transport.— Ad Homonym (@jean_leroux) August 2, 2020
This is not only fake news...but old fake news.
The website that originally posted the article, run by a former PWC employee, was shutdown almost two years ago. 🤦🏻♂️ pic.twitter.com/3s6CAI0c2X
The quote was a trending topic in 2018, “snagged” by the third party website Trendolizer, Le Roux says. “Trendolizer looks like a social media trend aggregator, and in this case it grabbed the same headline in a trending story that did the rounds in July 2018...two years ago.”
Trendolizer also credits News Updates SA as the source of this claim.
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