Traders decry harassment as Bii team launches ambitious Sh1.4bn revenue drive

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  • The county department of Finance and Economic planning is projecting to collect the money by tightening all its revenue streams to meet the set targets.
  • Lamai said that residents will be required to clear pending bills before being issued new licences and certificates for businesses.

Governor Jonathan Bii’s administration has launched an ambitious drive to collect more than Sh1.4 billion own source revenue in Uasin Gishu county this year.

The county department of Finance and Economic planning is projecting to collect the money by tightening all its revenue streams to meet the set targets.

However, traders in the town have complained of harassment by county askaris in the name of forcing them to pay revenue or operate in particular areas.

County executive for Finance Micah Rogony has directed revenue officers to set up satellite offices in all wards, townships, trading centres and urban estates to net all available taxes.

”We believe that if we go closer to the citizens we shall be able to collect revenues from business units that are located in far-flung areas,” Rogony said at the county hall in Eldoret during a meeting with heads of revenue collection.

Present at the meeting was Governor Bii’s economic adviser Philip Melly who urged residents to embrace the drive to collect all revenue.

Melly said with adequate resources Bii would be able to implement his Nguzo Kumi economic plan which he promised during campaigns.

The county director for revenue and compliance Joseph Lamai said the county had trained all its revenue officers to perform their duties efficiently

“We shall deploy a sufficient number of officers and equip them with tools to ensure efficient service to meet our targets in revenue collection,” Lamai said.

Lamai said that residents will be required to clear pending bills before being issued new licences and certificates for businesses.

The move will help to mop up revenue arrears in house rents, market stalls and land rates.

He said all rates and rents will be payable by mobile money or bank deposits. There will be no collections in cash, he said.

Lamai said the county aims to collect Sh957 million between January and March 2023.

“This will translate to 47 per cent of our target,” he said.

The department collected Sh473 million between October to December 2022. Lamai said weekly and monthly revenue targets will also be introduced as a way of spotting and mitigating revenue collection.

Former governor Jackson Mandago’s administration collected Sh1.2 billion during his last year in office. It was the highest amount collected by the county.