Resounding no, to new parking fees

October 27, 2010 12:00 am

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Oct 27 – The proposed increment of parking fees by the City Council of Nairobi continued to elicit stiff opposition from city residents as well as a section of councilors.

At least three lobby groups have now threatened to go to court to challenge the new fees, which are due to come into effect on Monday.

The Motorists Association of Kenya, the Kenya Alliance of Resident Associations (KARA) and the Nairobi Central Business District Association said in separate statements that new parking rates that go up from Sh140 to Sh300 per day should serve as a wake-up call for all residents to demand value for their taxes.

A lobbyist against the increase George Kimando said; “Towards this end, a group of well meaning citizens residing in Nairobi have initiated a process towards consumer protection and for a start, we are filing an injunction in court against the City Council of Nairobi opposing the new parking fee they have introduced.”

KARA called on motorists to boycott paying the new rates when they come into effect. The group said the move had no justification since the council had failed to assure motorists of security on the streets.

“It is unreasonable, punitive and unrealistic for anyone to think that city residents can part with Sh300 in a day for parking and then add to Sh10 to Sh50 shillings for parking boys,” read the KARA statement.

KARA is now asking Deputy Prime Minister and Local Government Minister Musalia Mudavadi to shelf this proposal until adequate consultations are held between the stakeholders.

At the same time, a section of PNU councillors now want the fees and levies imposed on city residents to be de-gazetted to allow for consultations.

Speaking on their behalf in Nairobi, nominated Councillor Mutunga Mutungi said the new rates which take effect next Monday were too high and would impact negatively on city residents.

“The notice for convening a meeting to come and discuss about that agenda has never come to our notice and we are saying we want the minister for local government to de-gazette those fees so that the council can discuss them further,” he said.

“The agenda for those levies was the subject of discussion during a council meeting and it must have been slipped into the council,” he added.

He claimed that the issue was not discussed by the council as required by law.

“The Deputy Town Clerk should actually tell the world why an item of agenda was deferred and then appeared in a council meeting,” he said. “He should have convened a meeting for the council or finance committee to discuss further on the fees and charges because members felt they were too high.”

A statement from the council said that charges for on-street parking for saloon cars would be Sh300 up from Sh140.

Lorries weighing three to seven tonnes will now be required to remit Sh1,000 up from Sh800 while the fees for motor bikes would remain at Sh50 within the Central Business District.

Off- street parking within the CBD that is non-automated will rise to Sh400 per day from Sh200 while in automated parking; Sh50 will be paid for entry plus an additional Sh15 for every 30 minutes.

Seasonal parking for private cars will now be Sh3,000 up from Sh2,000 per month while 43-seater buses will have to part with Sh8,000 up from Sh4,000 monthly.



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