CORRUPT SUSPECTED

MCAs ask City Hall to state revenue from billboards

Minority chief whip says officers collude with firms to rob county of revenue

In Summary

•City Hall loses more than Sh15 million every month from the illegal erection of billboards

•City has more than 200,000 signage and more than 1,000 large format advertisements

Nairobi county officials take down a billboard belonging to an advertising firm on June 2
REVENUE SOURCE: Nairobi county officials take down a billboard belonging to an advertising firm on June 2
Image: FAITH MUTEGI

City MCAs want to know the amount of revenue collected from advertisements and billboards, specifically those erected along Jogoo and Langata roads.

Minority chief whip Peter Imwatok has demanded a statement on how City Hall manages the revenue streams.

 "As per the Nairobi City County Finance Act, advertisement and billboards are among the key revenue streams for the county and it is critical that investors in billboards and advertisements remit the requisite fees to the county as per the law because the county partly depends on the collections to undertake development in the interest of the residents of the county," Imwatok's statement reads.

Speaking to the Star yesterday, the minority chief whip said some county officers had allegedly been colluding with stakeholders where they negotiate the amount to pay and are allowed to set up the billboards within the city.

"Billboards and advertisements is a devolved function under the county government but when you look at the number of billboards erected compared to the flow of money coming in as revenue, they don't add up," he said

The Makongeni ward rep said it was important for the county to expose the cartels said to be working with stakeholders to rob the county of revenue.

He wants the Planning and Budget committees to state the number of billboards approved by the county for erection on Jogoo and Langata roads.

The statement should show the amount of revenue collected from the billboards and advertisements during the 2018-2019 financial year.

Imwatok also wants to know the steps taken by the county executive to ensure investors remit to the county requisite charges and the actions taken on those who evade payment.

The county’s top five revenue streams, namely, land rates, parking, single business permits, building permits and billboards and advertising, are said to have been underperforming through the years.

In March, it was reported that City Hall loses more than Sh15 million every month from the illegal erection of billboards.

The capital city has more than 200,000 signage and more than 1,000 large format advertisements from which the county collects Sh700 million annually against an estimated potential target of Sh2 billion.

Then executive  for Urban Planning and Lands said Nairobi was owed more than Sh227 million by outdoor advertising companies.

The fourth quarter Budget Implementation Report for 2018-2019 shows that among the more than 100 revenue streams, only fire inspection and house rent met their annual targets.

From land rates City Hall collected Sh2.04 billion against a target of Sh3.6 billion. Parking fees amounted to Sh2 billion against a target of Sh3.03 billion.

Single Business permits were sold for Sh2 billion against a target of Sh 2.6 billion while building permits raked in Sh990 million against a target of Sh1.5 billion.

Billboards and advertising yielded Sh785 million against a target of Sh1 billion.

The county revenue department blamed the use of outdated valuation rolls and poor conditions of collection for the shortfall.