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No, Kenya’s deputy president didn’t graduate with ‘second class honours - lower division’

What looks like a University of Nairobi (UoN) degree certificate with the name “Ruto William Kipchirchir” has been posted on Facebook with the claim it’s for William Ruto, Kenya’s deputy president. 

The certificate has the university’s logo, and says the graduate had been awarded a bachelor of science degree in botany, with a “second class honours (lower division)”, in October 1990.

It’s captioned: “Legit[itimate] Degree Certificate award of Dr. William Samoei Ruto.” The certificate has also been posted on Twitter.

Kenya is slated to hold general elections on 9 August 2022. The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission is responsible for clearing political aspirants to run according to required criteria, such as being degree holders for certain positions. 

But the process has been hit by controversy, with several candidates accused of submitting fake degrees.

Is this really the deputy president’s certificate?


University records show Ruto awarded a second class honours ‘upper division’

Africa Check searched UoN’s digital repository for the 1990 graduation booklet. We found it listed all the students who graduated that year.

According to the record, 498 students graduated from the faculty of science with a degree. 

Two William Rutos are listed, but only one graduated in science – Ruto Kipchirchir William – who was awarded a second class honours upper division and is listed as the 130th entry

Kenya’s deputy president is often named as William Samoei Ruto. We had another look at the university’s records. 

Its 2018 graduation booklet shows a PhD in plant ecology was awarded to one Ruto, William Kipchirchir Samoei.

The university has posted the Facebook certificate on its official Twitter account with the word fake stamped across it. “Kindly take note,” it tweeted.

The certificate doing the rounds has been doctored.

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