Lawyer sues county govt for Sh3k after his vehicle was clamped
A Meru-based lawyer has sued the county government, seeking Sh3,000 special damages after his vehicle was clamped over failure to pay parking fee in Meru town in October last year.
Nahason Karuti accuses the county enforcement officers of trespassing on his car and unlawfully detaining it as he parked it along Kenyatta Street on October 3 and 12 last year.
The lawyer contends that the section of town was an undesignated area and thus he was not supposed to pay the parking fee.
He wants Meru Chief Magistrate Hannah Ndung’u to term the county’s action illegal and also award him general and aggravated damages saying he paid the Sh50 parking fee plus Sh500 fine after the car had been clamped for eight hours.
Through lawyer J.G. Gitonga, Mr Karuti says he had parked his car along the street to buy some items in a nearby shop when he found the vehicle clamped.
He said the action caused him anxiety as he had to use a taxi to carry out his day’s activities, which caused him inconveniences.
Mr Karuti says he pleaded in vain with the enforcement officers to free the vehicle, arguing that he feels he was coerced to pay the Sh550.
“I was forced to unwillingly pay Sh550 demanded through the demand notice which was stuck in the car windscreen. My car was clamped with sharp spikes and padlocks on my car’s wheels on two occasions in a place that was not designated as a parking lot,” he told the magistrate.
The county government denies liability and contests that every part of Meru town was designated and motorists liable to pay parking fees.
Through county attorney Joel Mutuma, the devolved unit wants the case struck out saying that Mr Karuti did not issue any demand letter seeking refund of the Sh550 before filing the suit.
Asked why he was seeking Sh3,000 yet he had receipts for Sh550 he had paid, Mr Karuti explained that the other amount was for the taxi he had paid on the material day.
He said he had misplaced some of the receipts and could not table the documents to support his payment for a cab.
The matter will proceed on October 9 this year when an enforcement officer working with the county government will testify.