Fact Check

Xenophobia: Claim Nigerians expelled foreign traders false

Claim: A Twitter user shared a video alleging that Nigeria is chasing away foreign investors from the country.  

Xenophobia: Claim Nigerians expelled foreign traders false

The narrative is false as the video was shot in Ghana in 2019 when a Ghanaian trade association reacted to Nigeria’s closure of the border.

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The term ‘Xenophobic’ is once more trending on Twitter. As usual, the prime countries involved are Nigeria and South Africa. Just this time, the narrative is taking wide turns, with diverse claims and assertions that appear to hold no genuine ground. One user, apparently South African, shared a video alleging that Nigeria is chasing away foreign investors from the country.  

The claim was shared on Twitter and has already amassed over 9k views, over 400k reactions and has been retweeted over 300 times. Evidently, the post also appears to have triggered multiple debates amongst users who neither consented nor agreed. 

Agboola Ayobami (@AYOMITAN_1) argued that the contents of the video are not from Nigeria: 

“This is even obvious that this is not Nigeria, but sentiment and emotions will not let you guys be logical about the video.” 

While another user, the oppressed one (@Thobho5), questioned that:

“If it’s not Nigerians, who are they? You can tell us better.”

Xenophobia: Claim Nigerians expelled foreign traders false
The claim on Twitter, alleging that Nigeria is expelling foreigners from doing business in the country

But what does the video say?

The video depicts a man making a public speech at an apparently public gathering. What he was saying was precisely a demand for all foreigners to leave the markets. The man stated that “GEDA would like to announce that the deadline we gave to our foreigners in our markets is long overdue and as such, we demand all foreigners to leave our markets and shut their shops.” The 45-seconds video did not mention precisely what country the event in the video was unfolding or what foreigners were being told to leave the market precisely. 

However, other commenters indicated it was in Ghana and not Nigeria, as alleged by the claimant. 

“Ghana not Nigeria, how do you guys reason like mumuni and assume Nigeria does all this to foreigners? How are they going to do? Just how” bafflord (@BhadmosLukman) contested

Impending implications of the claim

On Twitter and other social media platforms, there is currently a raging tension between Nigerians and South Africans. While the claim may appear to be just another Twitter post, its implication may be a ticking time  bomb. First, it may escalate the rising tension between the two nations into an actual hostility and full-blown conflict. Secondly, it may hamper the relationship between both nations.  

Verification: uncovering the truth

When Dubawa ran an analysis of the video on InVid Video verifier, the finding revealed the video was first shared on November 1st, 2019 on CiTi TV’s official Facebook page and YouTube channel. The post that disseminated the video was accompanied by the headline “Nigeria border closure: GUTA and GEDA demand shutdown of foreign shops in retaliation.”

Notably, Dubawa discovered that the claimant only took 45 seconds out of the 4:23 minutes video originally shared by City TV. 

The actual narrative 

The actual narrative in the video took place in Ghana, back in 2019. When the Nigerian government closed down its borders with neighboring countries to stop the smuggling of goods, especially rice; the Ghana Union of Traders Association (GUTA) and the Ghana Electrical Dealers Association (GEDA)  also staged a public announcement demanding foreigners to vacate the markets in Ghana.

It was the event to this public announcement that was reported by Citi TV, a privately owned multi-platform network based in Adabraka, Accra, Ghana. The media station saw the GEDA and GUDA announcement as a retaliation for Nigeria’s move, since many Nigerians also own businesses in Ghana.

Even more, the man speaking in the video was Samuel Addo, the public relations officer of the GEDA and the report was widely covered back in 2019 by other prominent media outlets. 

Xenophobia: Claim Nigerians expelled foreign traders false
A complete version of the alleged video on CiTi Tv’s YouTube Channel


Apparently, the claimant attempted to twist the narrative and align it to the discourse of the moment. However, neither the video nor the narrative therein was taken or shot in Nigeria. This claim is false.

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