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County targets transport sector to boost own-source revenue

The Busia County government is set to explore the transport sector to increase its own-source revenue.

According to Governor Dr. Paul Otuoma, an increase in the locally collected revenue will in the long run limit over reliance on external funding for the county’s development agenda.

While addressing the media in Busia town, Otuoma said his administration will direct more energy in local revenue collection as he restructures the county government in order to boost service delivery to residents.

The Governor said the main focus in the transport industry will be the cargo sector and this will be achieved through completion of the trailer parks in Malaba and Busia town.

He said the long distance trucks provide an avenue through which Busia can generate revenue locally, but subject to availability of parking zones to facilitate the revenue collection process.

Over 1,000 cargo trucks pass through the Malaba One-stop-Border-Post daily while the Busia One stop Border Post handles about 600.

Otuoma said for the next five years the county government will strive to seal revenue leakages and take full advantage of the border to generate money to support local development initiatives.

He stated, “on the issue of revenue leakages and sources of revenue, like you are very much aware that you cannot charge people when there is traffic jam. So, these cargo trucks which are blocking our roads here, they have nowhere to go because they are in a traffic jam. How do you go to a traffic jam and start charging people?

Otuoma regretted that the biggest revenue earner to the county currently is the NHIF payments to hospitals.

He said it is unfortunate that the county has been concentrating on a very tiny revenue stream in the markets.

What sense does it make for the County Assembly to project that the county will collect Sh1 billion and then collect less than Sh200 million and much of which is from the NHIF?” posed Otuoma.

By Melechezedeck Ejakait

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