About Scanned Commencement Programs, Forged Graduation Certificates and Failing Grades. Or Is It?
“I am not the best person to ask about staying in school” — Mark Zuckerberg to a group of Black Students @ North Carolina A&T.
That was the take of one of the world’s richest man — on the importance of college. While Mr. Zuckerberg went on to plug the value and importance of college, there was no mistaking that Facebook’s CEO fully recognized that some people can become wildly successful without graduating from college or even high school including the millennial who is worth $58bn — that is fifty-eight billion with a “b” dollars; money whose source is fully traceable!
Meanwhile in Kenya, Mombasa County Governor Hassan Joho and Nairobi Senator Mike “Sonko” Mbuvi are being upbraided because they are not the “college-educated” paragons of society Kenyans expect their political leaders to be; at least based on images of their educational records making the rounds on social media — Twitter to be exact.
The 4th Form papers of President Kenyatta’s nemesis Hassan Joho are supposedly fake according to that benchmark of unquestionable service and moral rectitude the Kenya National Examination Council (KNEC). Yes, that same KNEC that for the first time in its history this past October, oversaw examinations that were supposedly “clean” and free from corruption.
“Sonko”, for his part got an “E” in Mathematics during his ’92 certificate of examinations exams. Defending the failing grade, the Nairobi Senator claimed that lots of students failed Math that year:
“Watu wangu getting an E in maths in 1992 haikuwa mbaya kulikuwa na mass failures.”
And late last month (February 27th), the Daily Nation offered “evidence” of the “graduation” of Gov. Joho’s foil — from the respected liberal arts institution Amherst College. The newspaper offered a scanned copy of the institution’s commencement program bearing President Kenyatta’s name, circled, as proof that he had “graduated with a degree in political science and economics”.
In the US, it is common knowledge that just because someone’s name appears on an institution’s commencement/graduation program does not mean they received their degree i.e. graduated. It simply means that they filed paperwork to walk or participate in the ceremony — for a host of reasons. The student still needs to go through a degree checklist — successfully — AND settle any outstanding debts including tuition, parking tickets, room&board, overdue library books etc. Only then will the institution confer a degree to the student. For the record, I am yet to see confirmation from Amherst that it awarded Uhuru Kenyatta a degree in political science and economics.
There is interesting congruency between the educational backgrounds of Mr. Kenyatta and Mr. Joho albeit spun differently: Both have copies of some “evidence” of their educational history floating somewhere in cyberspace and anecdotes from “classmates” of their physical presence in some classes. However, one “graduated” while the other is fighting off “claims that he forged his certificate to get admission” into college.
The timing of these revelations, especially of Joho’s papers, coming in the wake of the KRA’s decision to freeze his assets portend an ominous trend to say the least.
Nigerian Author Chinua Achebe writes that “a frog does not hope around in broad daylight unless its life is in danger.”
I will not pussy-foot around the issue:
Mombasa Governor Hassan Joho is the target of a coordinated smear and character assassination campaign by the Jubilee Government. What makes the attacks scary and extremely Nixonian is the government’s use of its instruments of violence (military and para-military), regulatory oversight (KNEC) and compliance (KRA) against the governor.
The same government that could not provide suspect Uhuru Kenyatta’s bank records (not to mention phone records) to the International Criminal Court simply flipped a switch and Joho’s bank accounts were frozen. And a week later, the same inept group of bureaucrats who until the other day could not conduct a clean examination to save their lives miraculously checked and cross-checked multiple references and records and concluded that “Joho Hassan Ali did not register nor sat for the year 1992 KCSE examination….”
Simply astonishing and proof that Jubilee can indeed rise to the occasion and expedite adjudication of corruption cases if it so wants to. Or can they?
Unfortunately, there was a minor yet telling detail on the “VERFICATION AND CONFIRMATION OF EXAMINATION RESULTS” letter issued by the KNEC making the rounds on social media.
⚠Memo to Jubilee’s Operations Research — Please Read Carefully⚠
If, as head of an agency appointed by the incumbent government, you are going to write an official letter, retrospectively, questioning the educational qualifications, indeed intellect of a public figure who also happens to be a member of the opposition and a thorn in the side of the incumbent government, make sure that the letter is pristine before making it public.
The purported official letter casting aspersions at the educational qualifications of the opposition member should not have any typos or grammatical errors. It shouldn’t have punctuation, stylistic or use of tense errors.
Gov Joho “did not register nor SAT for…..”?
Shouldn’t it be “…..did not register nor SIT for…..”?
The comedy of error continues when one tries to make sense of the claim that Gov. Joho allegedly forged his Kenya National Examination Council (KNEC) Certificate; one that shows Cs, Ds, and Es instead of the desirous As and Bs!
My reading of the tea leaves:
In classic Trumpian fashion albeit without the 3AM Twitter rants, Jubilee is deliberately and strategically using shoddily forged and manufactured documentation along with state instruments of power and control to intimidate and frustrate Gov. Hassan Joho — arguably the second-most powerful and articulate voice in the Opposition National Super Alliance (NASA) Party.
Even more telling is the fact that Jubilee has not pursued others who have been accused of having fake academic papers with the same zeal they’ve done going after Gov. Joho; the same Joho the same government cleared to vie for the governorship of Mombasa four years ago.
The glaring hypocrisy aside, let’s not kid ourselves. Hassan Joho is collateral damage in Jubilee’s ultimate goal: Election Day Victory.
The faux outrage over grades, certificates and degrees are all slights of hands to mask and obfuscate Jubilee’s skullduggery at the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) with August 8, 2017 less than one hundred and thirty-four days away.