South Africa’s Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal provinces experienced a week of looting, protests and violence following former president Jacob Zuma’s imprisonment for contempt of court.
During the tense week several false and misleading videos were shared online. In many cases old or out of context videos were passed off as recent events.
Social media users tagged Africa Check in many of the posts, including one with a video of a long queue winding along a road. Most posts of the video, filmed from a helicopter, said it showed food queues in Ulundi, KwaZulu-Natal.
Google Maps confirms video filmed in Ulundi
Using Google Maps we were able to confirm that the video was filmed in Ulundi.
At the beginning of the video there’s a building on the corner of a T-junction. This is the Ulundi police station on King Zwelithini street. A billboard in the video is also visible in Google street view.
At 19 seconds the Ulundi municipal building appears in the video. In Google satellite view, the same building and green roofs can be seen.
Video filmed on 16 July 2021
The next step was to confirm if the video was filmed after the violence and looting in KwaZulu-Natal.
Africa Check spoke to Ulundi’s municipality speaker, councillor Johanna Manana. She confirmed that the video was shot on 16 July 2021, by municipal manager Nkosenye Zulu.
Manana said the queue formed because the municipality had decided that “only two shops, Spar and Boxer, would be open on that day. This was to try and avoid looting and burning of shops.” She said that all shops in Ulundi had since been opened.
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.
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