A campaign by Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta, #UhuruDabChallenge, to motivate young people to register to vote went awry after social media users took the opportunity to point out misplaced priorities in his administration.
The challenge requires youths to “dab” — a type of dance move that resembles sneezing into your elbow — in voter registration centres and share photos and videos of themselves doing it on social media. Kenyans will go to the polls on August 8, 2017.
The winner of the Dab challenge, whether it is a group or individual with the most retweets at the end of the remaining five days of voter registration, will be rewarded for their patriotism, including visiting with me at State House.
And as part of the campaign, Kenyatta recorded a video of dab moves at the State House with a popular local dance group called FBI.
However, Twitter users inspired by the hashtag started publishing criticism under #DabOfShame. Kenyans wondered how the president could find time to record a music video while the country is going through major social and political problems such as hunger, drought, cattle rustling and nationwide strikes by university lecturers and doctors.
Following the backlash, tweets and photos related to the campaign hashtag (including the one mentioned above) were deleted from President Kenyatta’s Twitter account.
Despite deleting the tweets, some Twitter users such as Dikembe published screenshots, which they are mockingly sharing them online.
— Dikembe (@Disembe) February 11, 2017
Showing his disapproval of the challenge, Master Chengo posted two images showing the difference between a presidential dab and a common citizen's dab:
— Master Chengo (@MOGULinfluencer) February 11, 2017
The video below from Kenya NTV shows president Kenyatta dancing with FBI dance group:
Elia Muriuki noted:
— Elias_Muriuki (@iam_muriuki) February 12, 2017
#UhuruDabChallenge in for a rude shock after being turned down by pissed Kenyans. It turned into #DabOfShame Work hard #Sir_presidente
Mark Wuon Odhis complained:
Kenyans are suffering with this drought and all we are asked to do is dab #DabOfShame
— Mark Wuon Odhis (@makoth) February 11, 2017
Kenya is experiencing severe drought, which the president has declared a national disaster.
Silas Okumu joked:
#DabOfShame after dubbing next is twerking… we shall do it now that drought is a national disaster.
— Silas Okumu (@sokumu58) February 11, 2017
Twerking is a type of dancing in which an individual moves to music in a sexually provocative manner.
While Kibii Eliud asked the president:
— Kibii Eliud (@eliudkibii) February 11, 2017
A parody Twitter account purporting to be that of a fictional son of Kenyatta joked:
— Uhuru Kenyatta Jnr (@UkenyattaJr) February 12, 2017
However, there are Kenyans such as Yobra Silver who was in support of the campaign. He wrote:
It is good to know he also appreciates the youth
— yobra_silver (@yobra50100) February 11, 2017
Another Twitter user wrote:
#UhuruDabChallenge wow! HE Uhuru me and my hommies are dabbing????
— saidamilan (@saidamilan) February 10, 2017
And Annie made the following observation:
Its only in Kenya that a president is not supposed to dab, laugh or have some good time~smh #UhuruDabChallenge
— Annie (@matrevor) February 10, 2017