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Tanzanian president makes undiplomatic remark about Kenyan deputy president? No, graphic fabricated

IN SHORT: There is a trend of fake news graphics being shared on social media. One such graphic purports to quote Tanzanian leader Samia Saluhu dismissing Kenya’s deputy president as "speaking recklessly like a madman". There is no evidence that she made such a statement.


A graphic circulating on Facebook in March 2023 attributes a rather undiplomatic quote about Kenya to Tanzanian president Samia Suluhu Hassan.

The graphic, with Suluhu's picture, has a quote attributed to her in Kiswahili that reads: “Kenya aibu yenu kubwa ni naibu wa Rais anaropokwa kama kichaa,, Naomba Ruto kamtafute Raila wazungumze amani idumu.”

This roughly translates as: “Kenya, your greatest shame is that your deputy president speaks recklessly like a madman. I urge Ruto to reach out to Raila for dialogue so that there can be peace.”

The graphic also has a branding on the top right, making it look like it was published by the popular Kenyan news website.

 It has been shared on Facebook here and here.

But did president Suluhu say this?


The context

Opposition leader Raila Odinga lost the 2022 general election to president William Ruto. The supreme court upheld Ruto’s victory but Odinga says it is  illegitimate and has been leading weekly protests since 20 March in protest at this and the high cost of living.

But did publish such a graphic allegedly of Suluhu's remarks?

Several red flags

A red flag that suggests the quote may not be genuine is the poor punctuation used. In the words, “kama kichaa,, Naomba Ruto…”, two commas have been used side by side, followed by a capitalised word. 

The graphic also misspelled Suluhu's surname as “Hasan” instead of “Hassan”.

The undiplomatic language allegedly used by the Tanzanian president to refer to Kenya's deputy Rigathi Gachagua is another red flag.

It is highly unlikely that a leader of one country would use such derogatory language about another, let alone neighbouring countries like Kenya and Tanzania, which have strong bilateral relations.

Furthermore, if the quote were true, it would have made headlines in the media in both countries and would likely have prompted a strong official diplomatic response from Kenya. As it was, the allegation was not the subject of any coverage by the mainstream media in either country.

Finally, the quote bears the branding, suggesting that it was published by the website. Africa Check searched the site’s social media postings and website but found no such quote.

Africa Check has flagged many fake graphics over the years. It is important to check whether quoted graphics have been published on the official channels of the media they claim to be from.

The disparaging quote attributed to Suluhu and purportedly published by is fake.

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