Israel Ambassador to Kenya Michael Lotem
President-Elect Dr William Ruto received congratulatory message from President of Israel Isaac Herzog that was presented by ambassador Michael Lotem, Karen, Nairobi County.

A tweet claiming that Israeli Ambassador to Kenya Michael Lotem was fired after congratulating President-elect William Ruto is false.

The tweet published on 23rd August 2022 claimed, “Israel Ambassador fired hours after congratulating Ruto.” The tweet has been retweeted over 170 times and attracted over 1,300 likes.

The claim was made a day after Mr Ruto received a congratulatory message from the President of Israel, Mr Isaac Herzog, that was presented to him by Ambassador Lotem in Karen, Nairobi, on 22nd August 2022.

While accepting the congratulatory message, Mr Ruto committed himself to boosting Kenya’s relations with Israel. “We look forward to growing our relationship with the people of Israel and working together on key areas such as universal healthcare, agriculture and water provision. We appreciate Israel’s support in these fields,” Mr Ruto said.

Investigations by BusinessToday, however, show that the firing report is false. We contacted Israel’s Deputy Ambassador in Kenya Drora Dorsman Yarkoni, who stated that the information is false. “It’s false news,” Yarkoni said.

Besides, a Google search for the news on the firing of the Israeli ambassador did not yield any positive results, with news of the envoy congratulating Mr Ruto dominating the search results.

The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) chairperson Wafula Chebukati on15th August 2022, declared Ruto president-elect. According to Mr Chebukati, Dr Ruto garnered 7,176,141 votes representing 50.49 per cent of the total vote, while Azimio flagbearer Raila Odinga got 6,942,930 votes which represent 48.85 per cent of the total vote.

World leaders including the United States of America congratulated President-elect William Ruto following his victory. President Yoweri Museveni of Uganda, Nigeria’s Muhammadu Buhari and South Africa’s Cyril Ramaphosa are African leaders who congratulated Ruto.

BusinessToday has looked into the claim that the Israeli Ambassador to Kenya was fired after congratulating Mr Ruto and finds it to be false.

This fact-check was produced by BUSINESS TODAY with support from Code for Africa’s PesaCheck, African Fact Checking Alliance network and the United Nations Development Programme.

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