Back to Africa Check

South Africa’s ruling ANC ‘appeals’ with former president Jacob Zuma? No, newspaper front page is fake

IN SHORT: A newspaper front page reports that South Africa’s ruling party has appealed to former president Jacob Zuma “not to de-register them”. But be warned, the headline is fake.

Facebook posts making the rounds in South Africa claim to show a front page story by daily newspaper the Star.

The StarThe text on the front page reads: “ANC APPEAL WITH ZUMA NOT TO DE-REGISTER THEM.”

“Can someone explain this?” one caption reads. “Zuma is holding all the cards,” says another. 

On 29 May 2024, South Africans will vote in national and provincial elections. 

Polls suggest that the ruling African National Congress (ANC) could win less than 50% of the vote for the first time in 30 years. 

Former president Jacob Zuma has been in the spotlight since supporting a new political party, uMkhonto weSizwe (commonly known as the MK Party), which was formed in 2023.

The ANC has put together legal bids to prevent the MK Party using the name and logo of the defunct armed body of the ANC, which had previously played a role in the struggle to end white-minority rule in South Africa.

But did the Star report that the ruling ANC had appealed to Zuma “not to de-register them”? We checked.

Nothing but the facts

Get a weekly dose of facts delivered straight to your inbox.

TheStarFrontPage_Fake

‘Below is a fake poster’

The lack of credible reporting by other media platforms on what would be a newsworthy story raised our suspicions.

A quick search of the Star’s official social media platforms to establish if the post was authentic led us to an X (formerly Twitter) post in which the paper said the front page was fake.

“All our posters are on this page and posted every night ahead of the paper the next day,” the Star said. 

“If a poster is doing the rounds on social media but is not seen on this account, posted by The Star, it is fake! Below is a fake poster,” it added.

 

 

As the elections approach, false claims about the major political parties are likely to spread on social media. Head to Africa Check’s South Africa Election Information Hub to help you cut through the noise.

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 africacheck.org.

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.