POOR ENFORCEMENT

Incompetent 'kanjos' contribute to loss of millions of revenue

County's head of security Tito KilonzI says officers only check date and lifespan of business licence during patrols

In Summary

• The Nairobi County Assembly Finance, Budget and Appropriation committee on Tuesday expressed their concern over lack of proper enforcement

• The committee hard pressed Kilonzo to explain why regardless of the officers' incompetence they still carry out enforcement duties

Nairobi County Chief Security Officer Tito Kilonzi.
Nairobi County Chief Security Officer Tito Kilonzi.
Image: EZEKIEL AMING'A

Incompetent city officers could have contributed to the loss of millions in revenue annually.  

It has emerged that the majority of the city inspectorate officers, popularly known as 'kanjo', lack the capacity to differentiate between real and fake licences.

The Nairobi County Assembly Finance, Budget and Appropriation committee on Tuesday expressed their concern over how the lack of proper enforcement has contributed decline of revenue in the city.

 

Led by chairman Robert Mbatia, the committee said the officers are only trained to do general enforcement rather than acquiring the know-how skills that would help in verification.

The officers have been accused of undertaking enforcement duties without the company of technical officers from the various revenue departments who have the codes to verify a genuine or fake licence.

"In cases where enforcement officers are not with the technical team, this is where we hear cases of harassment which result in low compliance," Mbatia said.

Appearing before the committee, county's head of security Tito Kilonzi had disclosed the officers only check at the date and lifespan of the business licence during their patrol.

"It is not possible to look at and verify all the business licences we have in the city unless there are complaints raised. But our subcounty officers always check to ensure businesses are compliant,” he said.

The committee hard pressed Kilonzo to explain why regardless of the officers' incompetence they still carry out enforcement duties.

Kilonzi said the officers are only accompanied by the technical team when they have detected or suspected fake licences.

 
 

The officers are made available only upon the request of the chief officers.

“Our mandate is to assist all revenue departments with enforcement and we are not in revenue collection. For any issue to be keenly looked into, there must be a complain raised from the department," Kilonzo said.

He said that at least 60 inspectorate officers have been deployed in various revenue departments for enforcement.

Despite Kilonzi saying that the officers only enforce and not collect revenue, it was revealed that in the 2017-18 financial year, the department had a target of Sh82 million.

Cornered by the committee, Kilonzi said the target was always there but he raised the issue with Pauline Kahiga, the acting county secretary, and they were scraped off. 

The Inspectorate department was also put on the spot over harassment of city residents.

Eastleigh North MCA Osman Adow had raised concerns over the frequent arrest of innocent people who fall in the hands of ruthless askaris.

Tito condemned the wrongful arrests and vowed to take action when such cases come to his attention.

"For such events that would be a violation of the person's rights and I will ensure that my officers will desist from such," he said.