Kenyans waiting for coronavirus curfew crackdown? No, photo from 2011

A photo of hundreds of people crammed onto balconies on the side of a building has been posted on Facebook with the claim it was taken in Kenya’s capital of Nairobi in March 2020.

The post reads: “In Githurai, curious onlookers have started to gather and are seen securing vantage points of the streets below in anticipation of free afro cinema and dance that will unfold after 7:00 PM. Kenyans, you don’t cease to amaze me. Stay Tuned! Stay at Home!”

On 27 March 2020 Kenyan president Uhuru Kenyatta imposed a dusk to dawn curfew to slow the spread of Covid-19

The “afro cinema” and “dance” in the post doesn’t mean entertainment. Clashes between police and civilians during the curfew have been widely anticipated. And photos, videos and media reports of police brutality under the curfew have been widely condemned.

Does this photo show crowds in Githurai waiting for the curfew crackdown?

Onlookers to building collapse rescue in 2011

Using a reverse image search, Africa Check found that the photo is almost nine years old.

We copied part of the permalink on a website brought up in the search and searched for it on Google. This helped us locate the photo on Getty, a stock photo website.

Here it’s captioned: “A crowd watches rescue efforts after a building collapsed on June 14, 2011 in Nairobi. At least two workers were killed and 14 others are missing on June 14 after a six-story building under construction collapsed in the Embakasi neighborhood of Nairobi.” 

The photo is credited to Simon Maina, an AFP photographer. 

The building’s collapse was covered by local Kenyan media. The photo is from years ago, and has nothing to do with the current coronavirus curfew. – Dancan Bwire


For publishers: what to do if your post is rated false

A fact-checker has rated your Facebook or Instagram post as “false”. What should you do? First, don't delete!

Click on our guide for the steps you should follow.

Publishers guide

Africa Check teams up with Facebook

Africa Check is a partner in Facebook’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.

Fighting coronavirus misinformation

Africa Check is working with the CoronaVirusFacts/DatosCoronaVirus Alliance, a coalition of more than 100 fact-checkers fighting misinformation about the Covid-19 pandemic.

Learn more about the alliance here.

© Copyright Africa Check 2020. Read our republishing guidelines. You may reproduce this piece or content from it for the purpose of reporting and/or discussing news and current events. This is subject to: Crediting Africa Check in the byline, keeping all hyperlinks to the sources used and adding this sentence at the end of your publication: “This report was written by Africa Check, a non-partisan fact-checking organisation. View the original piece on their website", with a link back to this page.