CDD FACT CHECK: Did US release names of Nigerians with illegal funds in its banks?

A message is circulating on social messaging app WhatsApp claiming that the United States President Donald Trump has revealed the names of top Nigerians who are killing the Nigerian economy.

The names of top members of the ruling All Progressives Congress or people close to President Muhammadu Buhari, the stolen funds they are purportedly kept in the US banks. Name of those listed includes members of President Buhari’ family, his aides, notable APC members, top government ministers and functionaries.

Like most fake news on WhatsApp, the message implored people to forward it to as many people as possible. It claimed the names on the list are those responsible for the recession and hardship in the country while adding what it described as “negative change” has killed Nigeria. It ended with a call to the youth to decide in 2019, which is a subtle way of asking young Nigerians not to vote for the APC and the re-election of President Buhari.

The Fact

Fact-checkers at the Centre for Democracy and Development West Africa (CDD-West Africa) did a Google search of the details in the message to see if any credible news organisation had reported it, the resulted yielded nothing.

Another pointer that the message is fake and aimed at misleading voters is that the list essentially comprised the name of Buhari’s ministers, appointees and family members and the call to voters to decide against those responsible for “negative change”.

The APC slogan in 2015 was “change” hence the use of change is a subtle way of blaming the APC.