Universities and other Institutions of Higher Learning might soon begin sharing academic certificates with the general public if a bill presented by Mandera South MP Abdul Haro is passed in parliament.
The proposed Universities Amendment (no.2) of 2023 aims to establish digital repositories within educational institutions to maintain comprehensive records of conferred certificates.
Through the bill, Haro envisions a future where the public can digitally authenticate the legitimacy of documents from each institution.
“Shall provide a database that is digital and that allows a person to access and ascertain the authenticity of the academic papers acquired from such university subject to the Data Protection Act,” Part of the proposed bill states.
The lawmaker seeks to alleviate the arduous journeys that many Kenyan individuals undertake to personally validate their academic qualifications at higher learning institutions.
“The online digital certificates will come in handy during frequent university strikes, elections, and epidemics,” the Member of Parliament added.
He emphasized that the suggested bill would fully uphold the fundamental freedoms protected by the Constitution, preventing encroachments.
Abdul Haro underlined that enacting this legislation is improbable to lead to any additional allocation of public funds.
The anticipated law is projected to streamline the process for employers to verify the educational credentials of potential hires, eliminating applicants who resort to shortcuts in securing employment.
Historically, the Ethics Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) has explicitly drawn attention to cases of job seekers falsifying academic certificates, prompting a call for heightened caution among employers.
The EACC also exposed various tactics employed by individuals in Kenya to counterfeit certificates, which involve manipulating grades and distinctions, all aiming to enhance their appeal in the fiercely competitive job market.