On October 25, 2020, fact-checkers at the Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD) spotted a post by Sahara Reporters, Naturenex and Pinnaclereport claiming that the lawmaker representing Tofa, Dawakin Tofa, Rimin Gado Federal Constituency, Tijjani Jobe, was beaten by members of his constituency.
The reports claimed that Jobe had visited Gulu community in his constituency when youths in the area attacked him over non-performance and his failure to fulfill his campaign promises.
Photographs used by the blogs for the story showed the sweating lawmaker surrounded by many people.
Investigation by CDD shows that the claim by the blogs that Honourable Jobe was attacked and beaten by members of his constituency is false.
Jobe, who is the Chairman of the House Committee on Rural Development, was on an oversight visit on Rimin Gado – Gulu road for an ongoing project he sponsored.
Our findings show that shortly after the lawmaker had inspected the ongoing road construction, he proceeded to his hometown, Jobe, where he was met by thousands of people who thronged his residence. He was also said to have started sharing money to the people upon his arrival in Jobe.
An eye witness, Yusuf Gajida, who is also a farmer in Jobe community told CDD that Jobe was not beaten by his constituent members as widely claimed.
“I swear to God nothing of that nature happened, he visited and left peacefully, in fact he received a warm welcome,” Gadija said.
Also speaking on the matter, Ibrahim Yaro, a personal assistant the lawmaker said the crowd of people were outside the premises waiting for Jobe’s arrival.
According to Yaro, the lawmaker had immediately ordered that the security at the gate allow the people entry into his residence.
He said photographs from the venue was taken and shared by a social media supporter who commended the lawmaker for supporting his people.
Yaro said: “It’s surprising how a newspaper will lift a story from a Facebook user and write a story based on the claim they didn’t verify.”
“After one of our social media supporters posted the picture praising the Honourable for the good gesture, a day after an opponent of ours used the same picture and captioned it “lawmaker beaten by his constituents” and that is what Sahara Reporters used to write their story, they used the picture and the caption, a day after other platforms also published the same story, it’s surprising,” he added.
The story published by several mediums claiming that Tijjani Jobe, the lawmaker representing Tofa, Dawakin Tofa and Rimin Gado federal constituencies was beaten by his constituents is false.
CDD is urging Nigerians to always verify the authenticity of stories before sharing them.
You can forward suspicious messages for verification via +2349062910568 or contact us on twitter @CDDWestAfrica
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