CLAIM: CDD fact-checkers have spotted a trending message on Twitter from the handle, purportedly belonging to the Nigerian Senator, Dino Melaye, representing Kogi West Senatorial District accusing President Buhari with relations to the #Xenophobic attack in South Africa. The handle: @DinoMelaye_ tweeted with the message directed at President Mohammedu Buhari: “If it’s to travel out to chill in the name of medical check-up, you will be number one. Time to grow balls and head out to address important matters affecting your people, you want to send envoy. Were you not once a General??? Take the lead for once!!!”
The supposed tweet from Senator Dino Melaye was in response to a tweet from President Buhari’s verified handle @MBuhari: “I am sending a Special Envoy to President Ramaphosa to share our deep concern about the security of Nigerian lives and property in South Africa, and to ensure that the South African Government is doing everything within its power in this regard.” As at 3:00pm on August 4, 2019, the post has received 20.1K likes; over 8,000 retweets and increasing comments, going over 600.
FACT: CDD Fact checkers had reviewed the twitter handle @DinoMelaye_, with over 8,000 followers and found the bio: “Politician. #PDP. Official Parody account of Senator Dino Melaye. Senator representing the good people of Kogi West. Philanthropist. A King!!!” The account says, it is “Official Parody account of Senator Dino Melaye; the Urban Dictionary defines a Parody account as one, where they pose as a celebrity/big brand and make fun of said thing. It is also a fan or commentary account where individuals can share different ideas about a specific issue, person or company.
In addition, CDD fact checkers reviewed the known but unverified Twitter account of Senator Dino Melaye (SDM), @dino_melaye with 845.4K Followers and the bio reads: “Senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Former member House of Reps, Founder -Anti Corruption network, Democratic evangelist and Private Investigator.” Fact checkers did not see any tweet in response to @MBuhari on the subject matter.
The claim that Senator Dino Melaye (SDM) asked President Buhari to take a lead to South Africa in a tweet response to the ongoing Xenophobic Attacks against Nigerians in that country is FALSE. The Parody account was aimed to attract sentiment from the Nigerian public, disinforming people in a manner to further promote hate in the country.