Kabete MP Ferdinand Waititu may have stirred new controversy by adopting his new surname Babayao.
Just as the dust appeared to settle over his true identity and education credentials, questions are emerging on the names appearing on his degree certificate.
Mr Waititu said he studied at Panjab University, India, in the 1980s and once showed a degree certificate with the name Clifford Ndung’u Waititu, who he argued was him, as well as an undated photograph of him at the graduation ceremony.
When the Nation inquired from Panjab University, the institution confirmed that one Clifford Ndung’u Waititu was their student and qualified for the award a B-Com degree after completing the course.
Prof Kuldip Singh told the Nation that the Waititu indicated on the certificate attended the Sri Guru Gobind Singh College in Chandigarh, an institution affiliated to Panjab University, where he studied for B-Com between 1985 and 1988.
“The examination of the said course was conducted and degree issued by the said university,” Prof Singh, the Officiating Principal of the College, said.
The College is affiliated with Panjab University, Sector 14, Chandigarh, a city in northern Indian state of Punjab.
Panjab University is often confused with the University of the Punjab located in Pakistan.
The countries were once under the British Empire before they split in 1947, although some names are still shared across the border.
The pronouncement by the university could indicate that the certificates Mr Waititu has displayed in public to prove his education background are authentic. But do they prove it is the Kabete MP who earned them?
In a notice published in the Kenya Gazette a week ago, Mr Waititu declared that his full name would henceforth include Babayao as the surname, an addition he has included after nearly six years as a nickname he earned by defending Embakasi constituents when he was MP.
“Ferdinand Ndungu Waititu Babayao, of PO Box 395, Buru Buru in the Republic of Kenya, formerly known as Ferdinand Ndungu Waititu, formally and absolutely renounced and abandoned the use of his former name Ferdinand Ndung’u Waititu and in lieu thereof assumed and adopted the name Ferdinand Ndungu Waititu Babayao,” the announcement said.
“…for all purposes and authorises and requests all persons at all times to designate, describe and address him by his assumed name Ferdinand Ndung’u Waititu Babayao only.”
The announcement by Waititu’s lawyers, JW Wanjohi and Company advocates, says he changed the name on January 13 this year and formalised it through a deed poll registered with the Registry of Documents in Nairobi as Presentation Number 1451 in Volume DI, Folio 50/748, File Number MMXVII, early this month.
But by altering his identity, where does the name Clifford fall? In December, the High Court threw out a case filed by Kiambu Governor William Kabogo, who had accused the fiery MP of stealing another person’s college certificates and used them as his.
Justice Joseph Onguto said the issue had already been handled by the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission when Mr Waititu first sought to vie for Nairobi governorship in 2013, rendering his court without jurisdiction on the matter.
The Kabete MP, who says he will vie for the Kiambu governor’s post this year, has previously presented documents to show his bank transactions as well as the church he used to attend while he was studying in India.
He says he was born on April 4, 1961 and was admitted at the institution on June 19, 1979.
Yet the College told the Nation the student on their roll was born on November 23, 1962 and studied at the college between 1985 and 1988.
The Nation placed a query to Mr Waititu to clarify the anomaly. But the combative politician is yet to respond.
This confusion though, may mean little now that the EACC and other approval agencies already allowed him to vie on these documents in 2013.