On June 24, City Hall announced plans to gazette more parking areas as part of new revenue-raising measures to meet its revenue target of Sh19.8 billion against a budget of Sh39.63 billion for the year starting July.
The move will see more areas within the county, including residential estates earmarked as Nairobi Metropolitan Services (NMS) parking lots.
“We plan to gazette more parking areas and introduce zonal charging of the parking bays to increase revenue from parking fees,” said Nairobi Finance and Economic Planning CEC Allan Igambi.
The county currently charges a daily parking fee of Sh200 and got revenues of Sh1.5 billion in the financial year ended June last year, against a target of Sh2.8 billion.
In the proposed changes, City Hall is also seeking to do away with the standard Sh 200 motorists are currently paying for parking and introduce charges based on location (Zones) and estates.
Two Days ago residents in South C estates were shocked to find their vehicles clamped by NMS parking attendants.
The move, coming at a time when residents are struggling with a rising cost of living and dwindling incomes in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic is not just ill-informed but totally immoral.
City hall has often formed the habit of increasing service charges and fees for business permits without necessarily much to show in terms of improved service delivery to Nairobians.
In 2019, City Hall hiked parking fees in Nairobi’s Central Business District (CBD) to Sh 400 up from Sh 200. Luckily, the Nairobi public transport operators and Consumer Federation of Kenya (Cofek) rejected the revised parking charges with the latter actually suing City Hall, which ended up revoking the new rates.
Motorists in Kenya are also struggling with an increased cost of fuel, which coupled with the many hours spent in traffic and parking fees make a dent in their already stretched pockets. It’s even become a common trend to see people leaving their cars at home and taking a matatu to work because it’s cheaper. In fact, one of the ways to tell its end month, which signals “payday” in Nairobi is increased traffic owing to more vehicles on the roads as their owners can now afford to fuel and move around.
Increasing parking fees and much worse moving to estates at a time when Wananchi are even being taxed on air time and data following the introduction of Exercise Duty is adding an unnecessary burden on an already overtaxed citizenry.
Nairobi Senator Johnson Sakaja has opposed the move, saying he will summon the NMS and Nairobi County government to the senate after recess to revoke the proposal and we can only hope that his efforts bear fruit.
NAIROBI COUNTY PARKING FEES REDUCED TO SH 200 IN NEW BILL