Old video shows suspects being arrested in Oyo state, not Lagos

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As Nigeria prepared for its 2023 gubernatorial election in March, a video was shared online with claims that it showed unruly supporters of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) being arrested in Lagos state. But this claim is false: the footage shows suspects being detained in the southwestern Oyo state during the APC’s senatorial primary ballot in 2022.

“Killer squad in Apc crested cars arrested today by security agencies in Lagos (sic),” reads a tweet posted on March 17, 2023.

The post has been retweeted nearly 2,000 times.

The claim also appeared on Facebook, including here and here.

The video shows several men lying on the ground with their hands cuffed behind their backs next to two cars. One vehicle has a licence plate featuring a sticker of the APC’s governorship candidate in Oyo state, Teslim Folarin.

The tweet was shared by former senator Dino Melaye, a member of the main opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

He recently staged a walkout at the national collation centre in Abuja over vote tallying following the presidential election held on February 25, 2023.

Melaye has previously faced charges of spreading false information. His statements have also been fact-checked by AFP in the past (see here and here).

Nigeria held gubernatorial elections in 28 states on March 18, 2023. While the election was largely peaceful, there were reports of voter intimidation, ballot snatching and disruptions in Lagos and Rivers states.

But the claim that the video shows thugs arrested in Lagos is false.

Old video

Using the InVid video verification tool, AFP Fact Check found that the footage is from 2022.

News platform Sahara TV published the clip on its YouTube channel on May 29, 2022.

The site reported that the footage showed the arrest of armed suspects during the APC’s senatorial primaries in the town of Iseyin in Oyo state held on May 27, 2022.

Sahara TV is yet to respond to AFP Fact Check’s request for comment.

A local news blog in Oyo state reported that operatives from the state’s joint security task force had made the arrests.

Nigeria elections 2023