Facebook Flags Uhuru's Congratulatory Message to Museveni

  • President Uhuru Kenyatta (left) and President Yoweri Museveni during a past summit in Uganda.
    President Uhuru Kenyatta (left) and President Yoweri Museveni during a past summit in Uganda.
    Daily Nation
  • UPDATE Thursday, January 21: Facebook has since clarified that President Uhuru Kenyatta's message to Ugandan counterpart Yoweri Museveni was erroneous.

    In a statement to Kenyans.co.ke, the social media giant revealed that it was in communication State House to iron out the matter.

    “We are aware that our automated systems incorrectly labelled a post from State House Kenya as false. The post was a congratulatory message on H.E. President Yoweri Museveni re-election, that  featured a picture of the president that had appeared in a previously fact checked article that was flagged as false in December 2019. The issue has been resolved, with the matching error fixed, we are in communication with the State House Kenya.” Facebook Spokesperson.


    UPDATE Sunday, January 17: State House pulled down a congratulatory message from President Uhuru Kenyatta to Ugandan counterpart Yoweri Museveni on both Facebook and Twitter.

    The move came after backlash from Kenyans who criticised the head of state over the message arguing that the exercise had been marred with violence and rigging.

    Facebook had earlier flagged the post following an image that had previously been used in a fake post announcing a cabinet reshuffle in Uganda.


    Social sharing platform Facebook flagged a post by State House in which President Uhuru Kenyatta sent a congratulatory message to his Ugandan counterpart Yoweri Museveni.

    The head of state had sent the message on Sunday after Museveni clinched the the seat for the sixth time in the Thursday, January 14, elections that were marred with violence and allegations of fraud.

    In the message, Uhuru termed Museveni's re-election as a testimony of the confidence the people of Uganda have in his leadership.

    President Kenyatta also said Uganda had achieved stability and registered consistent economic growth under President Museveni.

    Screenshot showing the flagged post by State House on Facebook.
    Screenshot showing the flagged post by State House on Facebook.
    Facebook

    He also assured the neighbouring nation of Kenya's commitment to continue partnering with Uganda in advancing regional and continental integration agenda.

    Accompanying the message, however, was an image that had earlier been used in a fake post announcing a cabinet reshuffle in Uganda.

    It was hence labelled as "false information" in line with Facebook's policy of fighting false information that has increased in the wake of the US presidential elections. US President Donald Trump has since been suspended from the platform after some of his false posts were linked to incitement of violence. 

    Former Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko was quick to celebrate the development after his recent fallout with President Uhuru Kenyatta. 

    Uhuru seemed to have angered a section of Kenyan netizens after some claimed that the exercise was rigged against presidential aspirant Robert Kyagulanyi, popularly known as Bobi Wine.

    "Congratulations Bobi wine for getting over 3 million votes. It shows how Ugandans are yearning for change. Dictators and their sympathisers must fall," stated Benjamin Karingithi.

    "The election wasn't free and fair, no internet, power blackout etc. Congrats Bobi Wine for winning Ugandan election," added Keyari David.

    Museveni was declared the winner after garnering almost 59% of the vote against Wine's 35% according to Uganda Electoral Commission.

    Wine noted that he had evidence of voter rigging although soldiers did not allow him to leave his home together with his wife.

    Ugandan presidential candidate Robert Kyagulanyi Ssentamu also known as Bobi Wine
    Ugandan presidential candidate Robert Kyagulanyi Ssentamu also known as Bobi Wine
    File