The University of South Africa (Unisa) may withdraw former police colonel Vincent Mdunge’s diploma if it is found he used a fake matric certificate to enrol for the qualification.
The university’s Gherhardt Waldeck, testifying in Mdunge’s fraud and forgery trial in the Durban regional court on Monday, said the former policeman obtained a national diploma in police administration in 1997.
Mdunge, who resigned from the police service last year, is facing charges of forging his matric certificate and fraud relating to presenting it to the police 25 years ago to gain employment and earning more than R3 million over the years.
The State added a further charge of fraud last week, accusing him of also presenting it to Unisa to enrol for the diploma.
Mdunge has pleaded not guilty to all charges and insisted that he passed his exams and was given his certificate by his teacher and it was valid.
said the university intended taking disciplinary action against Mdunge for submitting a fraudulent matric certificate and, if found guilty, his diploma would be withdrawn.
Waldeck attempted to serve Mdunge the notice of the disciplinary action on Monday, but he refused to accept the document.
Arrangements were made to have it served on his attorney, Saleem Khan.
Khan said that the university was “prejudging the issue” and came to court to serve the notice on Mdunge in “full view of the media”.
Waldeck denied this.
Another witness, Daniel Morake, an Education Department official based in Pretoria, testified that Mdunge’s matric certificate was not authentic.
Morake said the exam number on the certificate referred to exams for the then standard eight external exams which Mdunge had passed.
“We searched the archive repository and came across this exam number for the standard eight certificate.”
He added that records showed that Mdunge wrote matric in 1985 but failed. He also wrote supplementary exams the following year and failed.
If Mdunge’s results had been tampered with then he would have picked it up.
“The results are manually transcribed in a schedule on triplicate paper and, if tampered with or scratched out, it would show.”
Morake said it was “unlikely” that department officials had made a mistake with the exam number and captured a standard eight exam number on the matric certificate.
Khan said Mdunge would deny that he wrote supplementary exams.
Lieutenant-Colonel Michael Benton, from the police’s human resources department, testified that Mdunge would not have been enlisted as a constable when he joined the police in 1988 without a matric certificate.
Benton conceded under cross-examination that Mdunge had done his job properly and never had any disciplinary action brought against him during his career.
Khan also said Mdunge and his witnesses would testify that he was promoted to the rank of colonel in 2012, despite queries about his certificate two years earlier because the police had found it was a “valid certificate”.
Benton said he was only asked for a copy of Mdunge’s certificate in 2011/2012 after an internal audit of qualifications was conducted by the police’s national office.
He said he was unaware of an investigation in 2010.
The trial continues.