Claim: Ex-presidential aspirant and CEO of IPI Solutions, Adamu Garba, just lately claimed that Crowwe, a web-based interplay app constructed by his firm, is the primary social networking platform inbuilt Nigeria and Africa in a put up on his Facebook web page.
Verdict: The declare is fake. There have been different social networking platforms inbuilt Africa as early as 2005.
Since its launch in July 2020, the Crowwe app, developed by Gloomme Business Connection, a subsidiary of IPI Group Limited, has witnessed plenty of backlash from the Nigerian populace.
On Google play retailer and the Apple app retailer, Crowwe attracted plenty of disparaging remarks within the evaluation part, largely because of Garba’s stance on controversial points within the nation’s socio-political panorama.
An instance is Garba’s stance on the Federal Government’s ban on microblogging platform, Twitter in Nigeria.
While defending the federal government’s motion, Garba had described the American microblogging and social networking service as “an insurrectionist tool” able to undermining the sovereignty of the nation.
Also, in October 2020, through the nationwide #EndSARS protest, which was geared toward disbanding a unit of the Nigerian police drive, Garba took a controversial stance by alleging that the protest had reworked right into a political agitation able to breaking regulation and order within the nation whereas threatening to sue Twitter CEO, Jack Dorsey, for retweeting a hyperlink for donations to help the motion.
On June 14, 2021, it was noticed the app was deleted from the Google Play retailer. Many had attributed this elimination to the damning feedback and low scores on the app web page, however the ex-presidential aspirant claimed that he was the one who requested Google to take down the app.
In an interview with Punch, Garba claimed he requested Google to take down the app from Google Playstore as a result of he wanted to replace the code.
Garba said that it was in a bid to make some enhancements that he requested Google to take down the app.
On June 15, 2021, Garba took to his Facebook web page to provide a private clarification as to why there are a ‘million’ requests for his app to be taken off the play retailer however maintained his former stance that the absence of the app on the play retailer had not resulted from low scores.
Garba listed 5 “crimes”, which he stated, could be answerable for the backlash the app has obtained.
However, in his listings, Garba talked about that one among his “crime” was that his firm constructed the primary social networking utility in Africa.
His phrases, “…third Crime is that my company build the first social networking application in not just Nigeria but Africa, apparently, it did not suit the narrative that above all else, it was the Fulani man’s company that build (sic) the app…”
In verifying the declare, Dubawa searched the web for comparable platforms that had been inbuilt Africa through the years.
It was first found that as early as 2005, South Africa already had a social networking utility often called Mxit which was constructed by Herman Heunis.
Heunis was born in a rural space in Namibia. He moved to South Africa the place he went to Stellenbosch University in 1977 and began his vocation in laptop programming 3 years after.
He based Mxit in 2005, rising it from a small firm with a workforce of eight into an African technological big with greater than 100 staff with customers in additional than 120 international locations around the globe.
South Africa, Mxit, a free on the spot messaging utility with an estimated 7 million customers, was described as the most well-liked native social networking platform.
Mxit, similar to different on the spot messaging apps, can obtain messages offline. For characteristic telephones, they’ve group chats, chat tabs, and offline messages, all on data-light (expertise that consumes 10 occasions much less cellular bandwidth).
For iOS 7, Mxit 7 has options like doodle and voice chat.
The firm was nonetheless bought off in 2012 to Alan Knott-Craig Jr. It later closed down in 2015.
Despite being a web-based social networking platform, Afroterminal was based in 2009 by two Africans in diaspora, Chioma Anyanwu, and Charles Akpom.
It was an African-focused social community that would offer a single on-line platform for Africans around the globe to attach, share information and related data relating to the continent, talk about concepts for the continent’s socio-economic improvement and construct digital and private relationships over the long run.
It allowed memberships from numerous international locations – with common members hailing from all 53 African international locations.
Another social networking platform inbuilt Africa was 2go. The utility was developed by 2go Interactive (Pty) Ltd in Cape Town, South Africa. It was created in 2007 by some college students of the University of Witwatersrand.
It helps over 1,500 completely different units, together with characteristic telephones, along with Android, BlackBerry OS and BlackBerry 10 smartphones.
2go is a chat-based cellular social community concentrating on customers in rising markets, significantly in Africa.
2go customers message one another without cost, meet new individuals, and share updates and pictures with family and friends.
In Nigeria, Yookos a Christian-focused web site was based in 2011 by the chief of Christ Embassy International, Pastor Chris Oyakhilome, to convey religious messages amongst members of the Christ Embassy, in Africa. However, it penetrated past Africa as site visitors steadily elevated.
The web site, thereafter, turned in style and accommodated extra individuals. In 2012, there seems to have been a deliberate push to increase the social community’s subscriber base past faith.
Yookos was later developed into apps for smartphone units the place customers can be part of communities, meet new individuals and comply with subjects of curiosity.
It additionally affords customers a platform to purchase and promote of their native marketplaces.
By 2015, the KingChat App was constructed as a quick, easy, and private smartphone messenger that permits customers to ship messages. It permits customers to ship and obtain messages, footage, audio, location, and video messages.
From analysis, there have been many different social media purposes constructed by Nigerians in Nigerians and Africa, despite the fact that a few of them stopped being operational after some time, many others are nonetheless practical.
Crowwe is just not Africa’s first social networking platform. There have been a number of social media purposes inbuilt Africa since 2005. However, there are prospects, it’s the first social media app inbuilt Nigeria with a further on-line cost system.
The researcher produced this fact-check per the Dubawa 2021 Kwame KariKari Fellowship partnership with SaharaReporters to facilitate the ethos of “truth” in journalism and improve media literacy within the nation.