Does This Image Show Bishop Margaret Wanjiru in Prison?

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By Cynthia Kanyali

A Twitter post claims to show an image of former Starehe member of parliament Bishop Margaret Wanjiru, in a Kenyan prison following her 2017 arrest.

The image purportedly shows Wanjiru sitting next to another inmate with their legs and arms crossed. The wall behind the two women has an inscription that reads, “Margaret Wanjiru was here”.

“Bishop Wanjiru was arrested on 26th of April 2017, and was taken to Parklands Police station where she was held for interrogation,” reads the image caption.

Similar images have been shared on Twitter; here and here.

Verification

A reverse image search on TinEye.com reveals the original photo was first used on 5 July 2016 and Wanjiru was not in it. Instead, the original image was manipulated to insert an image of the Bishop’s head over the body of a prison inmate in the photo.

A further search using Google’s reverse image search accompanied by keywords ‘jail’ ‘yoga’, revealed that the original image was used in an article published by yogajournal.com on 10 November 2015 titled Inspiration Flipbook: 21 Yoga Photos To Get You On Your Mat.

In the article, photographer Robert Sturman, a dedicated yoga practitioner, showcases 21 images of yoga enthusiasts across the globe, including a group of female inmates in Kenyan prisons as part of the Africa Yoga Project.

While Sturman does not mention which exact women’s prison he visited, he states that the visit brought him unexpected joy, when the inmates, many living with HIV/Aids, shared that yoga has become a rare source of happiness in their daily lives.

“After yoga, the women are asked to paint what they feel. Most of them wrote about how much they loved yoga. I tried to capture this joy and the relaxing effects that this practice is bringing into their current reality,” he states.

On 26 April 2017, Bishop Wanjiru was held at the Parklands Police Station after she allegedly caused a ruckus at City Park polling station, Nairobi, during Jubilee Party primaries. The story was shared by local media houses including Citizen Digital here, along with a video published by The Star here.

She was released on 28 April 2017, on a Ksh 100,000 cash bail, after one night in the cell.

Verdict

PesaCheck has looked into a tweet with an image claiming to show former Starehe MP Bishop Margaret Wanjiru, in a Kenyan prison after a 2017 arrest and finds the image has been ALTERED.

This story was produced by Africa Uncensored in partnership with Code for Africa with support from Deutsche Welle Akademie.

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