Fact-checkNews

Factcheck: Vehicles ‘Newly Acquired By Boko Haram’ In Fact Old, Misleading Pictures

The incidents referenced are at least a year old, with one of them taking place in northwestern Nigeria where the terror group is not active.

A claim shared online, which supposedly showed armoured personnel carriers that recently fell into the hands of terrorists, is misleading.

On Thursday, April 28, 2022, Twitter user Ubasinachi Charles Okafor (@ubasinachimbia) uploaded a group of four pictures said to show equipment seized by members of the notorious terror group Boko Haram from Nigerian troops.

“Boko Haram releases photos of newly acquired armoured tanks, operation vehicles, others captured from Nigeria Army,” Okafor  wrote.

“The vehicles were captured on Sunday when the group attacked a Nigerian Army location. And yet Nigeria 🇳🇬 army are in South East killing, kidnapping innocent Biafrans.”

Some of the pictures showed armoured vehicles, including an Isotrex Legion Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicle, as well as other military trucks painted in camouflage colours. In one photo, young combatants wearing brown uniforms common among insurgents surrounded and inspected the armoured vehicle.

A screenshot of the tweet by Ubasinachi Charles Okafor (@ubasinachimbia)

According to the claim, the seizure took place the previous Sunday, April 23, 2022.

Reverse searches conducted by HumAngle, however, revealed that three of the pictures were originally released at least a year earlier in April 2021. The Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP), which broke away from Boko Haram in 2016, had released the images after an attack on the 156 Army Battalion in Mainok, Borno, Northeast Nigeria.

The fourth picture of a burnt vehicle is misleading too. It was similarly first published in April 2021 after a mob invaded a police station in Sokoto, Northwest Nigeria, and set fire to the building alongside two vehicles. The picture was released among nearly two dozen others by the state command.

HumAngle has, in the past, fact-checked other claims of recycled pictures related to the Boko Haram insurgency, including of military raids. Such posts, typically shared on social media platforms such as Twitter, are often part of a broader propaganda campaign to hype or condemn state forces or promote separatist agendas.


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Kunle Adebajo

'Kunle is Investigations Editor at HumAngle. You can catch him on Twitter @KunleAdebajo.

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