Report exposes multi-million scholarship fraud in Uasin Gishu
The Uasin Gishu County Assembly ad-hoc committee on the controversial Finland Scholarship Programme has tabled a damning report exposing a mega scam which saw embezzlement of millions of shillings meant for students travelling abroad for studies.
The committee is now recommending that the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) and the Directorate of Criminal Investigation (DCI) conduct an investigation into suspected forgery, abuse of office and integrity of county officials who served under the administration of former Governor Jackson Mandago.
According to the ad-hoc committee chairman Gilbert Chepkonga (Olaare ward) who tabled the report in the house, the scholarship program was more of a business enterprise meant to enrich a few county personnel at the expense of youth seeking to further their education.
“Members of the public were duped to apply for the program in large numbers because the program was run by the county government only for them to be stranded in a far-flung country. The programme was suspect from the beginning because there was no public participation and lack of transparency in the programme,” said Chepkonga (pictured).
People Daily established that under the arrangement, each parent of the students raised Sh1.19 million as school fees to the universities their sons and daughters were to be enrolled in once in Finland.
The parents also raised Sh100,000 for the air ticket, Sh80,000 for three months’ accommodation, Sh30,000 for insurance, Sh49,000 for the visa and Sh5,000 for a Covid-19 certificate.
However, three months later, questions are emerging following reports that many students risk being deported back to the country after the devolved unit failed to channel the money to the various universities’ accounts as agreed with the parents.