Ezekiel Machogu, the cabinet secretary for education, has now been called before members of parliament to investigate the irregular distribution of Ksh 883.3 million to government-sponsored students attending private universities during the previous seven years.

This comes after multiple irregularities in the program since its start were discovered during a special audit carried out by the office of the Auditor General.

Already, the audit has recommended that fifteen universities return Ksh. Two hundred nineteen million that they improperly took from public funds.

It was discovered that the government had improperly spent more than Ksh. There are two hundred million students for whom the Kenya Universities and Colleges Central Placement Service (KUCCPS) could not find placement.

"The audit reveals that funds amounting to Ksh.201,638,928 were disbursed to 4,521 who are non bonafide GSS students in the private universities as they were not placed by KUCCPS," the report indicates. Now that the taxpayers have paid millions to private universities, Auditor General Nancy Gathungu demands a refund, calling the payment irregular.

"The private universities should refund Ksh.201,671,080 spent on students funded under GSS not placed by KUCCPS," Gathungu recommended.

Africa Nazarene University will reimburse Ksh. According to the audit report, 47 million of the 1,042 students the KUCCPS did not second. Daystar University will reimburse Ksh. 57 million, while KCA will reimburse Ksh. 38,662,479, according to the Auditor General's document.

Kisumu-based Great Lakes University will take back Ksh.3, 745,653, Kabarak (Ksh.550, 312), ILU (Ksh.128,329), KeMU (Ksh.3,087,704), Lukenya (Ksh.8,083,387), Marist (Ksh.409,593), Mount Kenya University (Ksh.1, 675, 263), MUA (Ksh.2,289,185) and Pioneer (Ksh.515, 374).

Gathungu also wants Scott University compelled to refund Ksh.3, 325, 662, St. Paul's (Ksh.12, 312, 650) and Umma (Ksh.22, 242, 518). An investigation has now been sparked by the report presented to the Public Investment Committee on Governance and Education of the National Assembly, which Bumula MP Wamboka Wanami chairs.

According to the report, 788 students who had already received their university degrees were the recipients of an irregular disbursement totaling Ksh.35,199,064.

It also showed that, during the period under review, a total of Ksh.35 million in capitation funds were improperly distributed to graduates at eight different universities.

The report states, "Given the circumstances, it is possible that the eight private universities were overpaid by Ksh.35 199 064 paid to students who had already finished their studies and graduated."