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How city traders lose money to corrupt county officials

Some county officials have been illegally demanding cash from traders in Nairobi.

They claimed the money was a levy charged by the regional government.

Hundreds of traders, especially those with shops outside the city centre, have been paying Sh200 each per week to the rogue officials.

Governor Evans Kidero on Monday said the officials’ actions were illegal.

“I have been paying Sh200 every week to be allowed to run my business,” said a shop owner in Pumwani.

The shop owner said she and other traders pay the cash to the county officials when they visit their business premises. She said they are issued with receipts.

“It has come to my attention that traders who have already paid licence fees are being charged cess of Sh200 per week,” Dr Kidero said in a statement.

He said county laws stipulate that traders who conduct their business from permanent shops only need to pay for a single permit.

The fee is paid yearly, although there are some traders who prefer to pay either quarterly or twice a year.

We established that the practice has been going on for more than one year. It was only on Monday that one of the traders complained to the governor’s office, demanding to know why business people should continue paying the extra fee.

Dr Kidero was shocked by the news. He, however, did not say what action his administration would take against the rogue officials.

There are other City Hall officials who collect rent from tenants living in houses owned by the county government but do not remit the money to the cash office.

Some residents were shocked when they received statements from City Hall showing non-payment of rent.