Fake Samherji Fishrot apology circulating

The ‘WE’RE SORRY’ post was simply too good to be true even though it mimicked the company’s website so believably

This was a good one, to be honest. It looked so real and authentic that it was almost, almost believable. Everything looked so genuine – the webpage, the website, the links to other webpages mimicked the actual Samherji website almost perfectly.

But in reality that’s not how things work – no company ever apologises in the way this fake website post tried to make it seem the Icelandic company was doing it on 11 May 2023. And that’s what immediately gave it away. That and the UK web address.

For those who were taken in by this hoax, there’s simply no way, under any circumstance, that any company, no matter how deeply implicated in wrongdoing, would publish such statements as the following on its website or in a media release:

“We admit to using facilitation fees to enable corrupt financial transactions, extracting profits from Namibia, and paying minimal taxes. We also concede that we have illegally benefited from mackerel quotas, which led to job losses and long-lasting damage to the Namibian economy.

As a company dedicated to corporate social responsibility and human rights, we take full responsibility for our actions and pledge to cooperate with any relevant authorities in Iceland, Namibia, or elsewhere.”

The Icelandic company was quick, as was to be expected, to distance itself form the fake webpage media release, publishing a short statement on its real website shortly afterwards, also on 11 May 2023, that simply stated:

“Samherji’s attention has been drawn to the fact that unknown dishonest parties have sent a fake press release in Samherji’s name to foreign media outlets. The same parties also seem to have set up a fake website in the name of the company hosted in the UK and, at the same time, distributed fake advertising banners.

It should be noted that neither the website nor the press release has any connection with Samherji or the company’s employees. This appears to be a planned attack that the company takes very seriously. Samherji will request that the fake website is taken down.”

So, as much as Namibians want such a statement to be true, unfortunately this one is clearly FALSE.

For a brief overview of the Fishrot scandal read this PPLAAF post.


The statements, information and/or data referenced in this article have been assessed and found to be false.

11th May 2023

Frederico Links

Frederico Links is the editor and lead researcher of Namibia Fact Check and a research associate at the Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR)