No, Donald Trump didn’t tweet that BEE in South Africa was ‘economic segregation’

Did US President Donald Trump say on Twitter that South Africa’s policy of black economic empowerment (BEE) was only a “fancy name” for “economic segregation” that just “caters for a different group”?

That’s the claim in an article on junk news website XpouZAR.com.

But the article says the Twitter post “disappeared before going to press” – luckily,  “not before we have a screenshot of the tweet”.

The screenshot shows a tweet from @realDonaldTrump at 2.01 am on 24 February 2019.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

But screenshots of social media posts are easy to fake.

So did Trump really criticise BEE on Twitter?

Trump’s tweets are presidential records

Since Trump became US president in January 2017 he has continued to tweet on his personal account @realDonaldTrump. Some of his posts are then retweeted on @potus – short for “president of the US”.

It’s US law that the federal government owns and controls all presidential records. This means any communication by the president – including tweets – can’t be deleted. They must instead be archived and made available to the public.

It’s illegal for Trump to delete tweets while he is president.

Records of Trump’s existing and deleted tweets

In fact, a number of websites are dedicated to keeping track of everything the 45th US president posts online.

These include the Trump Twitter Archive and Factbase, which has a database of all of Trump’s deleted tweets.

The site Did Trump Tweet It keeps a daily record of tweets and retweets on @realDonaldTrump and @potus, and would note if any tweet were deleted.

Their record for 24 February 2019 does not include the “disappeared” tweet XpouZAR reports.

Fifteen tweets about South Africa in 10 years

Since Trump joined Twitter in 2009 he has tweeted about South Africa a total of 15 times, with one deleted tweet. Most of the tweets complain about crime. The deleted tweet was actually a duplicate of his most famous tweet about South Africa.

Trump has never tweeted about the South African government’s BEE policy. – Africa Check (22/03/19)


 

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