A former school principal has told the court that Kapseret MP Oscar Sudi was not a student at Highway Secondary School.
Patrick Maritim, who was the principal of the school between 2010 and 2019 also testified that the MP did not sit his Kenya Certificate of Secondary School (KCSE) examination at the institution in 2006. Mr Maritim said the index number Mr Sudi purports to be his belonged to another student.
“I can confirm that I went through the records of admission from the year he said he was at the school and that the name of Oscar Kipchumba Sudi was not appearing anywhere. Even the index number on the KCSE certificate belonged to another student,” said Mr Maritim.
Mr Maritim, who is currently the Chief Executive Officer in charge of administration and public service at the County Government of Bomet, further testified that there were no records to show that Mr Sudi collected his result slip and school leaving certificate after completing Form Four.
The former principal took to the witness box after anti-corruption court Chief Magistrate Felix Kombo ordered the case to proceed in the absence of the legislator after his lawyers failed to convince the court he was out of the country.
His lawyers Thomas Ruto, George Wajackoyah and Collins Kiprono had on Wednesday told the magistrate that the MP had travelled to Turkey to seek specialised medical attention but when they appeared in court, they could not produce evidence that he had travelled.
Trouble started in the morning when Mr Ruto and Mr Kiprono failed to appear in court and when Mr Wajakoyah was asked to explain the MP’s whereabouts, he said he was in the dark as he was unable to reach him.
The magistrate insisted that he finds the other two lawyers and when they arrived, Mr Ruto and Mr Kiprono presented to court two air tickets dated May 17 and May 18, and explained that the first flight had been cancelled and Mr Sudi rescheduled his flight.
“You first told the court that the accused had travelled but now it is clear that he did not travel and has just booked a flight to Turkey. You seem not to be sure even of the documents you are presenting to court,” said the magistrate.
The two lawyers then pleaded with the court to suspend the hearing until they get confirmation of the MP’s status but the magistrate declined and ordered that the hearings proceeds in Mr Sudi’s absence.
Mr Maritim in his evidence told the court that he received a request from the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission in 2015 to provide records of a student by the name Oscar Kipchumba Sudi who had alleged that he sat his KCSE examination at the institution.
He stated that following the request, he went through the admission books from 2005 to 2009 but could not find the name.
“I also went through the records of students who sat their KCSE in 2006 and had collected their school leaving certificates but could not find his name,” said Mr Maritim.
Mr Maritim confirmed that the candidate’s index number 81, with KCSE certificate number 40006/081/2006 which the MP claimed was his, belonged to one Nicholas Otieno who cleared and collected his certificate in August 2007.
The Kapseret MP is facing trial for allegedly forging academic certificates while seeking clearance from the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) to contest in the 2013 election.
He is alleged to have forged the KCSE Certificate and a Diploma Certificate in Business Management from the Kenya Institute of Management. The hearing continues.