From the Standard, Nairobi. 14 Kenyans probed over fake US degrees Published on 31/07/2008 By Samuel Otieno Fourteen Kenyans are among 10,000 people being investigated by security agencies in the US for buying fake degree certificates with which they have acquired key jobs, including in the military. The Kenyans under investigation, alongside other foreigners, are now staring at long jail terms if found guilty, deportation or humiliation among peers and family when they return home. In total, the suspects being investigated spent a staggering Sh500 million ($7.3m) to acquire the fake documents. The Kenyans under investigations are Amunga Justus Mully, who bought an MBA, Aseno George Onyango (BA), Gitau Patrick W (BA), Kirusara Mwandi Patrick (BA), a Mohammed (BA) and Muriithi Andrew Njeru (BA). Others are Oluchiri George (DBA), Omollo Joseph Odindo (BBA), Omukaba Martin (BS), Omukuenyi Hassan Nathan (BS), Omuluba Martin (BS), Ongunya Vitalis Omanyo (BBA), Oyer Omoro William (BBA) and Wachira Jenard Leo (MBA). The revelations put the Commission for Higher Education (CHE) on high alert and it told employers to be on the lookout over the influx of foreign degree certificates. Thousands of other Kenyans holding fake degrees have since joined plum jobs back home where they are unfairly edging out competent, locally trained employees. The certificates, acquired from what are popularly referred to as diploma mills in the US, have since landed the fake degree holders on lucrative jobs in America and other postings abroad. Others have been propelled to promotions in their respective places of work. Senior Kenyans involved When The Standard contacted the Kenyan Embassy in Washington DC, the deputy Head of Mission, Mr Galma Boru, could not comment on the saga, saying the ambassador, Mr Oginga Ogego, who was the only one who could speak on the matter, was in a meeting. The most shocking revelation of the scandalous intellectual fraud is that some senior Kenyans, including politicians, have been decorated with fake papers where some are being referred as doctors and professors. The 14 Kenyans under investigation, some holding what are supposed to be respected Masters of Business Administration (MBA) degree certificates, are among hundreds of people working in the US military, government and education sector. Foreign Affairs Minister Moses Wetangula said the Government was not aware of the matter, but had launched investigation to establish the details of the scandal. At the same time, Education ministrys Director of Quality Assurance and Standards Enos Oyaya declined to comment over the matter. "I do not comment on issues over the telephone because I must refer to the policies and I am outside the office now," Oyaya said when reached on the telephone. However, the Kenya National Examinations Council (Knec) said it only equates diploma and certificates offered by other examination boards outside the country. "The certificates and diplomas must be from an accredited examination body authorised by the law," said Knec Chief Executive Officer Paul Wasanga. According to the US Department of Homeland Security, the suspects are being investigated for buying counterfeit degrees from colleges and universities or bogus degrees from non-existent online high schools, colleges and universities. Normally, the US Homeland Security does not release information on cases it is investigating. It is now considering pursuing charges against about 300 US federal employees who bought bogus or counterfeit degrees. Kazi nzito !!.............Na kwetu je ?