Kenya: Sonko in New Battle With Badi Over Revenue Collection in Nairobi

Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko has opened another battlefront with Nairobi Metropolitan Services (NMS) Director General Mohammed Badi, this time in revenue collection in Nairobi.

The two are now set to lock horns in revenue collection in the capital, in what now threatens to create two centres of power in revenue collection in Nairobi.

PAYMENT PLATFORM

Just under a week after NMS announced a new revenue payment platform, *647#, for various services in the city, the county government has also set in motion plans to market its own revenue collection platform to rival the one by NMS.

City Hall is now urging Nairobi residents to use its platform, epayments.nairobi.go.ke powered by National Bank, to pay for services includes payment for all services except for parking.

The services include county bills, food handlers' certificate, single business permits, rent, land rates, market stalls, among others.

"Visit epayments.nairobi.go.ke, select the service you wish to pay from the available menu options then sign into your account if you wish to make payments not related to parking," reads the planned advert.

"You will receive a message on your phone prompting payment via Mpesa. Alternatively, go to Mpesa menu, select lipa na Mpesa, select paybill and enter business number 367776 and the account number as provided online," continues the advert.

REVENUE COLLECTION

This new development is set to clash with NMS' platform which also offers an online payment platform for county services including parking, business permit, land rates, property management and market bill management, among others in conjunction with Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA).

The new office pointed out that the new platform will, in the meantime, cover only the functions transferred but over time, it shall cover all the services in Nairobi County government.

This is as the *235# short code, which has been in use since June last year when Nairobi County government parted ways with JamboPay, will be completely phased out.

In March, KRA was appointed as the principal agent for overall collection of all county revenue replacing National Bank which had been collecting revenue on behalf of City Hall after Jambopay's contract ended in June, 2019.

Early last month, the taxman announced that it is rolling out in phases, a new revenue collection system, Nairobi County Revenue System (NRS), for all key revenue streams in Nairobi.

COUNTY FUNCTIONS

The new development continues the feud between the two leaders ever since NMS was established in March to oversee county functions including health, transport, public works, utilities and ancillary services, planning and development services.

It started with the transfer of more than 6,000 City Hall staff to NMS in April, then over a supplementary budget before escalating to implementation of various projects in the capital city with each claiming credit for the same.

Before long, the two leaders engaged in another exchange over the former mayor's residence in Lavington.

The governor now wants to terminate the agreement after declaring dispute over its implementation last month.

The matter is now before the Intergovernmental Relations Technical Committee (IGRTC) for arbitration.

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