Court bars Nyandarua county from implementing Finance Act 2024

Nyandarua Governor Kiarie Badilisha when appeared before the CPIC at Bunge Towers,Nairobi. [Elvis Ogina,Standard]

The High Court sitting in Olkalou has issued orders restraining Nyandarua county government from implementing the Nyandarua County Finance Act 2024.

This follows a petition filed by 60 traders on May 23, on grounds that the Act was in violation of the law.

Traders have been embroiled in a tussle with the county government over new single business permit fees after the governor assented to Finance Act of 2024 in February 28.

In their affidavits, they claimed that public participation was not conducted by the county assembly and that the Act was exploitative.

The traders claimed that the trade licenses had been doubled without considering their views.

They argued that the Act, significantly increased licenses and permits fees for doing business in the county.

“The Nyandarua county assembly failed, ignored, and refused to undertake any substantive public participation relating to the Bill. The petitioners and the Nyandarua business community were not apprised of the contents of the Bill, now Act, and only found out of the increment when they sought to renew their licenses, which most of them are now have been unable to do, given the exorbitant fees,” stated the traders.

The traders argued that the new fees undermine the national and county economic policies.

“The fees will make it impossible for traders to continue operating and a substantial number of them will be forced to shut down operations. More so, majority of prospective business persons intending to put up investments in Nyandarua county will find it impossible to afford the newly imposed fees,” they said.

Justice Anthony Ndung'u ordered status quo on licenses and permits fees, pending further directions when the case comes up for mention on June 20, 2024.

The county government, assembly and Nyandarua Governor Kiarie Badilisha are respondents in the suit.