Claim: Facebook users are circulating an image of a man wearing police camouflage with the claim that he is a deputy commissioner of police in Kaduna State, who was arrested with kidnappers when he went to supply them firearms.
Verdict: The image and content in circulation is that of a police imposter arrested in Akwa Ibom in 2019, and therefore, cannot be that of a deputy commissioner of police in Kaduna. The claim is, therefore, false.
The picture of a man wearing a police camouflage in what appeared to be a Nigerian-styled parade of criminals is being circulated by social media users with the caption that he is a deputy commissioner of police in Kaduna State.
According to a Facebook post by Araba Kayode, it is the image of a deputy commissioner of police in Kaduna State and his accomplices arrested while supplying weapons to kidnappers.
Before the recent circulation, Ayonla Multi Media had posted the same image on April 13, 2021, with the caption: “Kaduna State deputy commissioner of police went to give arms to kidnappers, unfortunately he was arrested with them. Hmm! Wonders shall never end. The post received over 1,000 comments and was shared over 12,000 times.
Daily Trust on Sunday first traced the origin of the image by using Yandex reverse image search, which revealed that the picture has been shared several times and goes as far back as 2019. The image was also traced to several counter narratives and even fact checks in the past, which stated that the image of the alleged deputy commissioner of police was fake.
Several reports published in 2019 show that the man from the image in question was arrested in January 2019 for impersonating a police officer. The spokesman of the Nigeria Police Force, CP Frank Mba, who was then a deputy commissioner of police had said, “The suspect in police uniform with the rank of an assistant commissioner of police, is one Kingsley Udoyen, male, 56 years, of No 3, Stadium Road, Abak, Akwa Ibom State. He is a fake police officer and not a serving assistant commissioner of police.”
The image has been used numerous times, either as claims or rebuttals as shown by Yandex Reverse Image Search.
For further clarification, Dubawa reached out to the Kaduna State police command, which equally debunked the claim. The command’s public relations officer, ASP Mohammed Jalige, said the attention of the state’s command was drawn to what he described as “fake news making the round on social media,” alleging that “Kaduna State deputy commissioner of police went to give firearms to kidnappers; unfortunately, he was arrested with them.”
Image of Kingskey Udoyem and a message from the Nigeria Police Force clarifying that the suspect is an imposter arrested in Akwa Ibom State and not a deputy commissioner of police.
ASP Jalige said the image in circulation was not that of any police officer in Kaduna command or anywhere in Nigeria, adding, “The image with camouflage uniform wearing the rank of an assistant commissioner of police is one Kinsley Udoyem, who was arrested and paraded by the Akwa-Ibom police command on January 2, 2019 for the offence of impersonating a police officer.” He urged the public to disregard the fake claim and stop its circulation.
This shows that the content with the image in circulation is fake; the man in the camouflage police uniform is an impersonator that was arrested in Akwa Ibom in 2019 and not in Kaduna State.
The researcher produced this fact-check per the Dubawa 2020 Fellowship, in partnership with Daily Trust newspapers to facilitate the ethos of truth in journalism and enhance media literacy in the country.