By Protus Onyango
Nairobi, Kenya: Nairobi residents must brace themselves for tougher times as the county government has introduced new taxes, which will increase the cost of living and dying. The residents will now have to pay more for mortuary services, graves, maternity, markets, houses, parking, transport, accommodation and hawking.
This follows the enactment of Nairobi City County Finance Act, 2013, through a special gazette issue . The Act has abolished all by-laws, resolutions, orders and authorisations issued by the defunct Nairobi City Council.
Beauty in the city now comes at a cost; to grow one tree in a compound, one will be required to pay Sh5, 000 and to prune it will cost the owner Sh3, 500.
A license to operate a plants nursery will attract a fee of Sh15, 000 per year and Sh1, 500 per visit for a county officer who comes to supervise the nursery. A landscape license attracts Sh10, 000 per year.
Even the cost of politicking in Nairobi has gone up as politicians will have to pay Sh250, 000 per day to use the main dais at Uhuru Park. Rallies held at Uhuru Park’s lawns will attract a levy of Sh40, 000.
This could turn out to be one of the major income earners for the city government as politicians usually book in advance all major parks and open spaces in the city.
Uhuru Park and Kamukunji grounds are the favourite spots for politicians when the political season approaches. At the same time, religious rallies at Uhuru park’s main dais now attract Sh50, 000 while preachers using the lawns will be required to pay Sh40, 000.
Street preachers have not been spared either, as they will have to cough Sh2, 500 per hour. City parks have been used as launching pads by preachers who congregate there during lunch hour to offer spiritual nourishment to starving dwellers.
Flagging off ceremonies are now charged at Sh10, 000 per hour while a similar fee is paid for pitching tent in the parks.
Amusement and recreation services have not been spared either. Those who want to ride a camel for a day will part with Sh600 while a bouncing castle will attract Sh5, 000 for the same time. To have a carcass of a hen, cat or pig collected from your compound, you will pay Sh400 and Sh4, 000 for the carcass of a cow, donkey, camel or horse.
Solid waste management charge per month in low income residential areas has been fixed at Sh100 per month, Sh300 for middle income earners and Sh500 for high income earners. Industrial waste is Sh20, 000 per tonne.
Tea rooms and cafes will pay Sh1,000 for low income-earners and Sh3,000 for high income earners. Rent for public toilets in upmarket areas is Sh15, 000 per month while an incinerator permit is Sh20, 000 per year.
A community based organisation interested in environmental issues will have to pay Sh10, 000 per year for a license. A transportation permit for stones, hard core, sand and ballast is Sh20, 000 per year.
All types of inspection of public health services will be charged at Sh3, 000 per visit while treatment of termites in public and private places costs Sh1, 000 and Sh5, 000 respectively.
A visit by a county officer to a private premise or public institution is Sh15, 000 and Sh20, 000 for a godown.
Control of bees and eradication of snakes is Sh10, 000 per job while pumping water out of a pool is Sh4, 000 and clearance of an overgrowth Sh3, 000.
Birth and death registration fee is Sh500. Cancellation, search or amendment of the birth or death certificates attracts a fee of Sh500. To bury your loved ones at the Langata and City Park cemeteries will also add to your sorrow.
Residents are now required to pay Sh70, 000 for adults, Sh50, 000 for children and Sh30, 000 for infants at City Park cemetery. Grave reservation at the cemetery is Sh40, 000 for adults and Sh20, 000 for children.
At Langata cemetery, the rates are Sh25, 000 to bury adults, Sh15, 000 for children and Sh12, 000 for infants. For Nairobi county citizens dying outside their county it will be more costly to their kin who will pay between Sh15, 000 to Sh30, 000 for graves.
Non-citizens dying within the county will pay from Sh15, 000 to Sh25, 000 while non-citizens dying outside Nairobi will pay from Sh15, 000 to Sh30, 000. Temporary graves within Nairobi area costs between Sh2,000 to Sh7, 000. To give birth normally at Pumwani Maternity Hospital is Sh3, 750 while Caesarian costs Sh7, 500.
Although the government policy is that maternity services are free in all public institutions, county-owned hospitals would later bill the government for all the deliveries.
An expectant mother who goes to the hospital a few days before delivery will attract a fee of Sh500 daily and a similar amount as ward bed charge per day. A health occupation or food hygiene certificate is Sh10, 000 as is a health certificate for a hotel or school.
Hiring an ambulance will cost from Sh1, 500 to Sh4, 500 for a radius of 10 to 40 kilometres. Owners of wholesales, hypermarkets, departmental stores, supermarkets, showrooms, boutiques, exhibitions, retail shops, chemists, butcheries and kiosks will pay from Sh4, 000 to Sh120, 000.
Hawkers, street vendors, small traders and service providers operating on the streets, verandah or temporary building will pay from Sh2,000 to Sh7,000.