KISUMU, Kenya, Jun 25 – The county government of Kisumu has ruled out further negotiations with boda boda riders over payment of a newly introduced Sh20 daily tax.
The county is targeting to raise Sh35 million monthly to fund development initiatives.
The County Executive Committee Member for Finance Nerry Achar, however said on Monday the county was willing to engage the boda boda operators on other contentious issues including a proposal by the National Treasury which will require boda boda riders to have insurance covers for their passengers.
Achar hinted that the county government is ready to assist the riders get third party insurance covers.
“There is no more discussion on paying rates by the riders, what we are ready to engage in is to see how the county can help the riders to improve on their services,” he said.
“It is picking up well and the noise is subsidizing,” the Finance Executive said in relation to the implementation of the new tax.
Treasury Cabinet Secretary Henry Rotich in his 2019/20 budget statement proposed that the operators must be ready to take care of medical expenses for their customers through the cover.
Speaking to the press in Kisumu, Achar decried difficulties in engaging the riders due to numerous associations that he said only breed confusion.
“During my negotiations with the riders’ officials, I got stuck, because of the number of officials representing different groups within the boda boda sector,” he said.
Achar further announced that soon the county government will commission a census for all the boda boda riders.
He said the data will help in designing programmes and policies that target the riders.
In the recent days, boda boda riders had staged demonstrations in the lakeside city while castigating the county for failing to conduct public participation before they can start payment of tax.