A Facebook page with more than 54 thousand followers shared on July 17 a collection of images featuring the Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Director of the World Health Organization Tedros Adhanom (Ph.D.), Indian movie actor Sha Rukh Khan, and the football legend Pele all wearing a similar academic dress of red gown and yellow velvet hood, captioned with lines of a song from a popular Tigrigna singer that reads, “The Tigrean flag does whatever it wants without bragging”.
The post is published after Tedros Adhanom, Director of WHO, received an Honorary Degree from the University of Edinburgh clad in similar academic dress. Different social media pages have shared an image of different celebrities and influencers wearing red and yellow Gown claiming it to be the Flag of Tigray.
However, HaqCheck inspected the claim and rendered it False.
On Jul 14, 2022, The University of Edinburgh gave an Honorary Degree to Tedros Adhanom, the Director of the World Health Organization (WHO) for the significant contribution he has made to raise the profile of nurses and midwives across the globe.
Later on, Dr.Tedros Adhanom forwarded his gratitude on his Twitter account for the honor bestowed on him by the University of Edinburgh.
The graduation ceremony was held in the graduation hall called McEwan Hall of the University of Edinburgh, in Edinburgh, the capital of Scotland.
Tedros received his honorary degree as part of the graduation ceremony for Nursing Studies students.
Given the fact that Tedros Adhanom was a senior leadership member of the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) and has been observed defending the TPLF in the Tigray war, the color of the academic dress he wore happened to be familiarized to the flag of Tigray.
The social media posts took the incident supposedly claiming that Tedros chose the gown to honor and remember Tigray. Besides, the posts used images of various politicians and celebrities wearing the same academic dress in a bid to show that these renowned personalities followed Tedros’ lead of honoring Tigray by wearing the same dress.
A Facebook page with more than 138 thousand followers shared a post on Jul 16, captioned, “Indian Movie Actor Sha Rukh Khan has joined ‘The Tigray Prevails Movement’.” by the time this article is posted the post had more than 300 reactions.
Since 1695 the University of Edinburgh has awarded Honorary degrees to over 2,900 individuals.
In 1984 The University of Edinburgh awarded an honorary degree to the former President of Zimbabwe Robert Mugabe for his service to education in Africa. But later He has been blamed for Zimbabwe’s failing economy and accused of running an oppressive regime which later made his degree to be revoked by the university on Jul 16, 2007.
Honorary degree recipients of the University of Edinburgh wear the scarlet gown with a yellow velvet hood according to the university’s code of gown dressing and has no connection with the Flag of Tigray or any movement. And the referred recipients of the University’s honorary degree, Justin Trudeau, Sha Rukh Khan, and Pele received their degrees on Jul 2017, Oct 2015, and Aug 2012 respectively, which shows they were not part of a claimed Tedros-led pro-Tigray campaign.
Even if the Honorary Graduates wear a graduation gown with the same color as the flag of Tigray. The claim used by different Social media posts is Wrong.
Therefore HaqCheck interrogated the Claim and rendered it False.