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Viral Screenshot of BBC News Africa’s report on Ghana’s election FALSE

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A viral screenshot suggests that BBC News Africa reported the just ended elections in Ghana with the headline: “Ghana’s peaceful elections dented for the first time. Opposition refuses to accept the largely flawed election.”

The viral screenshot which suggests that BBC News Africa published a story on Ghana’s election with the headline: ‘Ghana’s peaceful elections dented for the first time. Opposition refuses to accept the largely flawed election’, is fake, therefore the claim is false.

Full text

The National Democratic Congress (NDC) continues to register its rejection of the results of the December 7 elections.

Flagbearer of the party, John Dramani Mahama, at an event on Thursday, December 10, 2020, to address party faithful, emphasized his resolve not to accept the “fictionalized results of a flawed election”.

Members of the party across the country continue to register their disappointment about the outcome of the elections.

The election, before, during and after December 7, has received wide coverage by local and international media including the BBC, France24.com, among others.

In the wake of this, a screenshot of a news headline that has gone viral on social media suggests that BBC News Africa referred to Ghana’s election as a flawed election.

The headline on the screenshot reads: Ghana’s peaceful elections dented for the first time. Opposition refuses to accept the largely flawed election.

A paragraph of the purported story that accompanied the screenshot reads: The president who evidently lost his second term bid to rule the oil and cocoa rich country has resorted to the use of military and police to intimidate his people.

The screenshot comes with the picture of a man in military uniform, holding a gun.

One of the posts on Facebook posted by Kwabena Bobie Ansah attracted 55 comments, 232 reactions and 256 shares at the time of filing this report on December 11, 2020.

Verification

To ascertain the veracity or otherwise of the story, Dubawa visited the BBC News Africa Facebook page. We also visited the URL, BBC.CO.UK as shown in the screenshot which took us to bbc.com.

No story with such a headline was found on the Facebook page nor on BBC News bbc.com. Again, no story with such a headline could be found.

However, on the Facebook page of BBC News Africa, a post with similar features, aside from the website address, BBC.UK.CO, as the viral screenshot was found but with a different headline which reads: Ethiopia’s Tigray crisis: how a soldier survived an 11-hour gun battle.

A close look at the original story on BBC News Africa’s Facebook page shows the screenshot was taken of that story and edited to reflect a story about Ghana’s elections.

Conclusion

The viral screenshot which suggests that BBC News Africa published a story on Ghana’s election with the headline: Ghana’s peaceful elections dented for the first time. Opposition refuses to accept the largely flawed election, is fake, therefore the claim is false.

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The reporter produced this fact-check under the auspices of the Dubawa 2020 Fellowship in partnership with The Finder Newspaper to facilitate the ethos of “truth” in journalism and to enhance media literacy in the country.

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