Friday’s March 25 social media posts by the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) with images of individuals who purportedly destroyed property during Monday’s anti-government protests disseminated false information in an attempt to manufacture state propaganda.
The DCI said in the posts that all individuals whose images they had circulated had been given 7 hours to surrender themselves to the DCI Headquarters along Kiambu Road or the nearest police station.
It emerged that some of the photos it circulated of the alleged demonstrators over hooliganism were taken on different dates, some as far back as 10 years ago, and others were taken out of the country, in Burundi.
Some of the posted photos were also not shot in Kenya while others were not related to last Monday’s demonstrations in Nairobi.
One of the notable photos of a man appearing to return a teargas canister to the security agencies that has come to be known as “returning officer” was shot by Getty Images, an American British Visual media company and a supplier of stock images and editorial photography.
A reverse image search shows the image was first found on May 5 2017.
Another image showing a group of people holding sticks as two of them appear to jump over partly burnt branches was shot in 2015 in Burundi’s Capital Bujumbura by an AFP photographer.
A reverse image search of the image shows it was first found on May 5 2015.
As of Saturday, March 25, 10:30 am, the agency was yet to pull down some of the photos that have been labeled false.
The agency made the move days after President William Ruto labeled protestors linked to vandalism as “economic terrorists“.
It said the wanted individuals took advantage of the demonstrations to destroy public property, attack innocent members of the public and hurl projectiles at police officers who were on duty protecting life and property.
“The suspects are requested to present themselves at the Serious Crimes offices based at DCI headquarters along Kiambu Road or at their nearest police station before close of business today for further action,” DCI said Friday.
According to the DCI property of unknown value was destroyed while a total of 33 officers suffered injuries of various degrees as a result of the actions of the wanted persons.