Star newspaper front page www.businesstoday.co.ke
On October 22, several social media accounts shared a purported front page of the Star alleging that Dr Ruto supported the BBI report.

Deputy President Dr William Ruto has not endorsed the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI), and a screenshot of a headline story in The Star newspaper of the DP endorsing BBI being shared online is FAKE news.

On Thursday, October 22, several social media accounts shared a purported front page of the Star newspaper alleging that Dr Ruto supported the BBI report, which proposes changes to the Constitution.

The story was placed as the main story popularly known as ‘splash’ in newsroom lingo, creating an impression that the DP has supported BBI.

However, a fact check by Business Today found the story to be false, and aimed at misleading the general members of the public.

First, the main story for the October 22, 2020 edition of The Star newspaper was headlined “Sweeteners in Uhuru, Raila BBI referendum deal”. 

The front page of the Star Newspaper, available in both digital and hard copy at newspaper vendors and other retail outlets, did not have any story about Ruto.

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Below is the genuine front page of the Star newspaper for October 22, 2020.

A day before the BBI report was released in Kisii, Dr Ruto, who spoke during the 11th Mashujaa Day celebrations, said he hoped the report would trigger a “national conversation”, without committing any support.

“My friend the former Prime Minister has said reggae is back. But I hope we shall have a robust conversation to bring everybody on board,” said Ruto.

The Deputy President even skipped the event at the Kisii State Lodge where the report was unveiled, and instead attended the burial of Huruma Ward MCA Peter Chomba in Uasin Gishu County.

During the burial, Dr Ruto said that the BBI debate ought to be a decent conversation devoid of insults and intimidation.

As of October 22, 2020, Ruto had remained non-committal on the BBI report, which has proposed far-reaching changes to the Constitution through a referendum, and news that he was supporting the report are, therefore, FALSE.

[ This story was produced by Business Today in partnership with Code for Africa’s iLAB data journalism programme, with support from Deutsche Welle Akademie ].

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