Lawyer Augusto Ocampo filed fraud charged before Colombia’s Prosecutor General and Inspector General, describing the Mayor’s actions as “induced deception” of the electorate in an interview with newspaper Semana.
The mayor fought back against the accusations, claiming the charge was politically motivated since Ocampo had worked for Peñalosa’s rival, Bogota’s former mayor Gustavo Petro.
“I have never had to present an academic degree for any of my positions, and all of my resumes clearly state what I have done. This is simply political,” the mayor told press.
Though Peñalosa has long claimed he obtained a Master’s from the International Institute of Public Administration in Paris, a report published by newspaper El Espectador on Sunday showed that he only attended the school for eleven months.
The mayor defended himself saying that the education system of today compared to the 70s is extremely different, and it is difficult to know how the foreign degree would translate in today’s terms. The Parisian institute, however, confirmed that the courses he completed did not constitute a Master’s.
In April, journalists also debunked Peñalosa’s supposed PhD from Pantheon-Assas University in Paris, which he had referenced in several of his books and on his public CV.
According to Ocampo, if the investigation proves that the mayor has lied in official documents, the alleged fraud could warrant his dismissal from office.