Nairobi MCAs, executive differ on matatu tickets
Nairobi County’s budget committee has locked horns with the executive over a decision barring 397 matatu saccos from paying for their season parking tickets through the JamboPay electronic platform. Acting County Director for Parking Tom Tinega, through a memo issued in December, directed matatu owners to pay parking fees through banks citing collusion that enabled saccos to under-declare the number of their vehicles.Chair of the Budget and Appropriations Committee Robert Mbatia said the move had raised suspicion “as seasonal ticketing is the highest earner under parking fees, which can easily be managed through electronic monitoring.“When they pick on the highest earner, the stream which is the easiest to control instead of on-street parking, it raises eyebrows,” Mr Mbatia said.The showdown comes a year after Governor Mike Sonko defied a directive by MCAs to terminate the JamboPay deal over breach of contract.Parking is a top revenue earner but millions of shillings are lost due to corrupt officials, high number of defaulters and inability to nab those who do not pay fees.The stream earned City HallSh1.87 billion or 18.6 per cent of the Sh10.1 billion revenue for the year ended June.“We have had the challenge of people under-declaring their vehicles and paying less through JamboPay, that is why we issued the directive,” Mr Tinega said on Tuesday.
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City Hall charges Sh5,000 in monthly seasonal tickets for 14-seaters and Sh8,000 for 32-seaters.Nairobi contracted JamboPay to provide an electronic payment platform for 51 streams including parking fees. The deal ends on April 7.The under-billing row is the latest to hit City Hall’s deal with JamboPay a year after Mr Sonko failed to terminate the contract.The firm is mandated to settle all City Hall’s transactions within 12 hours for cash transactions and three days for all electronic payments but withheld Sh53.82 million between 2015 and last year.