Two media houses, The Star and NTV Kenya, have flagged the digital cards quoting Deputy President William Ruto as fake.
The cards claim to quote DP Ruto reacting to the 2 August 2021, standoff at Wilson Airport, where he was barred from boarding a Uganda-bound flight.
“I have been stopped from flying to Uganda because the system believes only the children of the rich and famous can fly to foreign countries to dine with presidents,” the fake digital card quoting DP Ruto reads in part.
The cards further claim that DP Ruto has had enough of the “humiliation” and warns the “tribalists and dynasties” to face him directly, instead of “hiding behind serfs in the civil service”.
“Please note that this quote doing rounds on social media is fake. All quotes by the Star are shared on our verified pages #FakeNewsAlert,” The Star wrote on their verified Twitter account.
The head of electronic news at Radio Africa, Susan Kiprono also told PesaCheck through a text message that the digital card is “fake”.
NTV Kenya, through a post on their verified Twitter account, wrote “fake news” and attached the digital card branded as the media house with a fake stamp on it.
Instead, on 2 August 2021, at 6:46 p.m, Ruto wrote on his Twitter account: “Isorait….tumwachie MUNGU [It’s alright… Let’s leave it to God]”.
DP Ruto posted the tweet hours after he was denied access to a scheduled flight to Uganda. His spokesperson, David Mugonyi, said Ruto was informed he had to get clearance from the head of public service before he can fly out.
“When he (DP Ruto) called Joseph Kinyua (the head of public service), he (Kinyua) said he wasn’t aware of such a directive,” Mugonyi said in a statement.
Ruto is said to have been kept waiting from 2 p.m to 5 p.m after which he returned to his office in Karen. The DP was to travel with three politicians, Kiharu MP Ndindi Nyoro, Kapseret MP Oscar Sudi, and Kinango MP Benjamin Tayari who were cleared after three hours.
On 4 August 2021, DP Ruto said in an interview with Inooro FM that the Wilson Airport incident, was a plot to humiliate him.
“Yale yaliyofanyika juzi katika uwanja wa ndege ni baadhi ya haya mambo ya kujaribu kunidunisha, kuonekana mimi sina maana. Kuna watu wenye uwezo mkubwa na mambo kama haya. Na kujaribu kuleta ushindani, nani mkubwa, nani mdogo, mambo ambayo sina haja nayo. Kunizuia kuenda kufanya mambo ya kibinafsi, sikuwa naenda katika safari ya serikali.
[The events that happened the day before yesterday at the airport are among things that have been done to humiliate and make me seem unimportant. Some people have the power to do such things — trying to start a competition between who is senior and who is junior, which are things I am not concerned about. Barring me from engaging in my personal business because I was not going on official duty],” DP Ruto said in the Inooro FM interview.
PesaCheck has looked into two digital cards with the branding of The Star and NTV Kenya, and bearing a quote purportedly by Deputy President William Ruto, and finds them to be FAKE.
This post is part of an ongoing series of PesaCheck fact-checks examining content marked as potential misinformation on Facebook and other social media platforms.
By partnering with Facebook and similar social media platforms, third-party fact-checking organisations like PesaCheck are helping to sort fact from fiction. We do this by giving the public deeper insight and context to posts they see in their social media feeds.
This fact-check was written by PesaCheck Fact-Checker Naomi Wanjiku and edited by PesaCheck Chief Copy Editor Rose Lukalo. The article was approved for publication by PesaCheck Managing Editor Enock Nyariki.