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Okuama Unrest: Videos falsely used to portray military genocide in Delta State

Claim: A social media user posted a video alleging that certain violent unrest is linked to military killings in the Okuama community. 

Verdict: False. Our findings show that the videos are not connected to army genocide in Delta State.

Full Text

Following the horrid massacre of 17 military personnel in the Okuama community in Ughelli South Local Government Area of Delta State, public opinions and assertions have continued to trail the ugly incident, which ended the lives of a commanding officer, two majors, one captain and 12 other soldiers of the Nigerian army.

Among such public opinions is a set of videos posted by an X (formerly Twitter) user, Grace Ella (@graceella2229), which both depict visible unrest allegedly connected with the military killings in the Okuama community in Delta State. 

“What is really happening in Asaba, Delta State again?… Nigerian army committing genocide in Delta State,” she wrote.

In one of the videos, an unknown woman whose voice can be heard in the background continues to shriek amidst gunshots from the police, stating that the incident was “happening live in Asaba.” 

In the second video, another woman, who apparently took video footage of the scenes in the recording, can be seen visibly sobbing and lamenting that her shop would not suffer the same fate as “Wuse market is burning.”

The post has generated over 7,000 views, 23 reposts, 54 likes, quoted six times, and shared seven times as of Wednesday, March 20, 2024.

However, other X users mentioned that the posts were unrelated, as one happened in Asaba and the other in Wuse– a city area in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

“The second video with a woman crying was not in Asaba, but in Wuse market crisis, Abuja.” Mansa of Igbo land (@Only1Nino1) reacted.

“That video of that woman crying is not in Asaba…” Freedom (@UdoBaba7) responded. 

Due to the evident contradictions made in the post, DUBAWA decided to fact-check the post.

Verification

DUBAWA examined the details of the first video and noticed significantly that the shooters in the video were state police personnel in Delta State. There were no visible material images that could be linked to the military. 

Furthermore, the unseen woman, who can be rightly credited for taking the footage, can be heard screaming that the incident occurred in Asaba– a land area entirely different from the Okuama community in Ughelli South Local Government Area.

DUBAWA conducted a keyword search and found out that the video was a reaction of motorcyclists against the state police force in Delta State over an alleged killing of two motorcyclists by the state police force. That was further amplified by the police spokesperson of the state, Bright Edafe, on X. 

Channels Television also reported a similar incident and referenced the involvement of the police force in the state in the incident.  

DUBAWA also conducted a keyword search related to a fire incident in Wuse, and we found video footage reported by Channels Television. The video is captioned “Cars burnt as fire guts Wuse Market in Abuja.”

Significantly, we found a minute detail that linked the woman lamenting in the video with the video reported by Channels television- both share a similar burning building. 

A screenshot of the burning building in Wuse Market was shared on Twitter
Screenshot of the burning building in Wuse as reported by Channels Television. 

Finally, DUBAWA noticed the woman in the video mentioned that the fire incident took place in Wuse, an area Channels Television mentions is in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

Premium Times also reported a similar fire incident in Wuse Market, Abuja. The news outlet further mentioned that the incident occurred when protesters set cars on fire in Wuse market, Abuja, in retaliation against the killing of a hawker by security operatives.

Conclusion

The claim is false. Both videos are not connected to the unrest happening in Okuama, Delta State, due to the gruesome killings of military personnel.

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