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No, video does not show helicopter that killed Kenya’s military chief Francis Ogolla

IN SHORT: Kenya’s Defence Forces chief Francis Ogolla and nine other officers died in a helicopter crash in April 2024. However, a video circulating on social media platforms does not show the aircraft they were travelling in.

On 18 April 2024, Kenya’s Chief of Defence Forces Gen Francis Ogolla was killed in a helicopter crash in Elgeyo Marakwet county, about 400 kilometres northwest of the capital, Nairobi.

Ogolla died along with nine officers, while two others survived.

Social media platforms were subsequently flooded with conspiracy theories about the cause of the crash, with some suggesting foul play.

Some users also posted a video, claiming it showed the aircraft that killed Ogolla. 

A video posted on the short-form video platform TikTok shows what appears to be a helicopter flying and firing weapons. The text on the video reads: “Chopper carrying CDF Ogolla crashes in cheptulel west pokot.”

West Pokot county lies to the north of the crash site. 

The video has been viewed over 3.7 million times, reposted over 3,300 times, liked over 90,000 times and received over 1,700 comments.

It was also posted on Facebook with a caption: “Here is the video footage of the plane that was carrying CDF Ogolla.”

The same clip has been posted alongside similar claims on Facebook here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, on X (formerly Twitter) here, here and on TikTok here.

But is this a video of the helicopter that killed Ogolla? We checked.

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Video shows different plane

Africa Check used the video verification tool Invid to break the video into frames.

We then did a reverse image search of the keyframe and found similar footage on YouTube dated 31 March 2024. The video’s caption reads: “Russian Ka-52 attack.”

The same video was posted on Instagram by the account @sky_fighters_club on 31 March. Here it was captioned: “Russian Air Force Ka-52 Alligator firing unguided rockets in ballistic trajectory somewhere in Ukraine.”

Africa Check was unable to find out when and where the video was made, but it appeared online weeks before the helicopter crash in Kenya.

The claim that it shows the aircraft that killed Ogolla is false.

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