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City motorists to pay Sh300 for parking

City motorists will now pay increased parking fees after Nairobi High Court Judge Isaac Lenaola dismissed an objection filed by Matatu saccos.

Motorists with saloon cars will now pay Sh300 for parking within the Central Business District up from sh 140.

Parking outside the city centre will cost Sh 200.

Matatu saccos had gone to court seeking to have the increase, contained in the County Finance Act 2013, nullified.

In his judgement on Wednesday, Justice Lenaola said the court cannot direct the Nairobi county government on how to exercise its duty of levying parking fees.

The Judge said the county is mandated under the Traffic Act and the constitution to determine the parking fees to be paid in designated places and method of payment.

“The county government has the option of legislating on calculation of parking fees and in its wisdom it has done that having taken into consideration public views, policies, as well as revenues it intends to collect,” said Mr Lenaola.

He said the Sacco’s failed to demonstrate how the levying of parking fees in the manner proposed by county government and the Nairobi City County Board has prejudiced national economic policies and economic activities across the county.

The Judge said it is not enough for the Saccos to state that they will shy away from entering the city because of the high parking fees levied by the county government.

“They have a duty to demonstrate how that will affect the national economic policies and they have failed to do so,” said the judge.

The Saccos claimed that the new parking fee charges, that were to be effected on November 1, were a violation of the County Finance and Traffic Acts.

Through lawyer Harrison Kinyanjui they said that although the County government had the power to impose parking fees, it cannot override the Traffic Act and that PSV vehicles use the city daily as individual members and individual vehicles.

“This is not a demand made out of the blue, it is a requirement of the County Government Act and County Government of Nairobi should not be allowed to violate the law,” said Mr Kinyanjui who stressed that the orders sought apply to parking fees only.

The new law, had proposed to raise fees for saloon cars parked in the CBD to Sh300 and Sh200 for those parked outside the CBD.

Lawyer Tom Ojienda, who representED the city government in the suit, said there was public participation before enactment of the Act.

“There is nothing that sets apart the petitioners from others, there is nothing to show they were not in the country to attend the public meeting,” said Mr Ojienda urging the court to dismiss the petition.

Mr Ojienda had said operations of the county of Nairobi risks being taken over by the national government due to deficit of funds should the petition challenging the increment was upheld.