An image of a voter card with the face of a child and the details of an adult has been making the rounds on social media, alongside claims that it shows a child voter, and could possibly compromise the integrity of the 2023 elections.
CDD Election War Room analysed the picture in question, and here is what we found:
We cross-checked the details of the voter card with the INEC voter verification portal and found it to be a valid voter card with the details below:
While the voter card is real, we suspect that the image may have been manipulated. Therefore, we decided to run a forensic analysis of the image using image and video verification tools.
Using InVid, also known as WeVerify, we found that the noise level on the image suggests that the image of the boy was not a part of the rest of the voter card as seen below.
The area marked X shows a different noise level from the areas marked B. This indicates a disparity in the voter card image.
To confirm this, we also ran two other voter card images using the same tool, and the noise levels on those were significantly lower.
A close observation of the image does indeed show that the image may have been manipulated. Comparing it with other images of voter cards, we notice that every voter card has a white box with a green border and the voter’s image is always placed inside the box.
For this particular image, the image of the boy protrudes up above the top border, suggesting the picture was superimposed after the voter card was produced by INEC.
Examining the noise level of two other voter’s cards, one could see the uniformity in the noise levels compared to the doctored voter’s card.
Our check on the INEC portal shows that the voter card exists, but forensic analysis of the image suggests that the image of the boy could have possibly been manipulated after the voter card was received. INEC has, however, warned that any visibly underaged voter attempting to vote will be arrested.