Murang’a County Assembly has enacted a law which will guide and ensure the county administration automates collection of revenue.
Use of modern technology in revenue collection is deemed to help the county government to meet its revenue target.
The Assembly’s Speaker Mr. Nduati Kariuki observed that since establishment of devolved units in 2013, Murang’a has never attained its revenue target blaming the challenge on manual collection of levies and taxes.
The speaker noted that since 2014, average collection of revenue by the devolved unit has been Sh580 million against a targeted Sh1 billion, translating to only 58 percent of the annual local revenue targets.
He added that there have been increased concerns and complaints by the Commission of Revenue Allocation (CRA) on why the county was not even collecting half of the targeted revenue.
Kariuki said the enactment of the law two weeks ago was as a result of the Assembly’s Finance and Implementation Committees’ advise after doing a benchmarking trip in Rwanda.
“The Committees’ benchmarking report identified lack of a comprehensive legal framework for collection and management of revenue in the county as a key impediment to realization of targeted revenue collection,” he said.
“The existing legal frameworks for collection of revenue exist separately, each providing its own enforcement mechanisms. This has resulted in multiplicity of levies, legal and institutional overlaps,” explained Kariuki in a press statement.
In the first financial year in office, the county administration managed to collect Sh. 400 million; 2014/2015 collected Sh. 562million; 2015/2016 – Sh. 617 million.
In 2016/2017 fiscal year, Murang’a government collected Sh. 506 million; 2017/2018 Sh. 454 million was collected; 2018/2019 a revenue of Sh702 million and in 2019/2020, the devolved unit collected Sh551 million.
The Speaker stated that the amount of revenue collected has been decreasing instead of going up despite an increase of businesses and properties in the county.
He said due to the use of a manual payment method, they suspected collected money was going to people’s pockets adding that they endeavored that the bill would stop the thievery permanently and introduce technology which is easy to track.
Kariuku remarked that in 2015, electronic collection of revenue was tried but did not succeed as it was not backed by a law saying the enacted law will be effective within 90 days.
“I believe that this legislation is long overdue and urge the residents of Murang’a and other relevant stakeholders to submit any views they may have for implementation of an automated revenue collection system,” added the Speaker.
By Bernard Munyao