Back to Africa Check

Photo shared on Facebook not of sick Mwai Kibaki or Raila Odinga

A photo of a man being carried on a stretcher to a waiting helicopter was posted on Facebook on 19 March 2021. 

“Mwai Kibaki reportedly very sick ... Tuddawa?” queried one user. “Tuddawa?” is colloquial Luganda for “where do we go?”.

The 89-year-old Kibaki is a politician who served as president of Kenya from 2002 to 2013. 

Other posts speculated that opposition leader Raila Odinga was ill. “Pray for Rails Odinga,” said one

“Mbu Odinga sibilunji naye twongele obasabila bona, God protect him. Keep praying for him bambi,” said another. The Luganda phrase translates to “things are not looking good for Odinga”. 

The photo also spread on Twitter, where some users tried to decipher it. 

One “fact-check” said the photo showed a police officer in Nyamira county being airlifted to Nairobi after being shot. Nyamira county is located in southwestern Kenya. 

So what does the photo show?


Not Raila or Kibaki

Instead of a reverse image search, we conducted an image search using the terms “police” and “airlifted”. It led us to a slightly different photo of the same people, on the website

A reverse image search of this photo revealed that the photos were published on the website of the Standard newspaper. Africa Check reached out to the Standard to ask who had taken the pictures.

“These photos were taken by Sammy Omingo, a Standard Group PLC journalist, at Kisii school on 17 March 2021. The victim was chief inspector Necanor Odhiambo who was shot by his junior in Nyamira and was being flown to Nairobi West Hospital,” the Standard told us. 

The photo does not show Raila Odinga, Mwai Kibaki or any other politician, but rather an injured police officer being airlifted to hospital.

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.