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City Hall reveals names on rate defaulters list

BUSIA
By | Apr 15th 2011 | 2 min read

By Morris Aron

The reality of the tightening noose on land rate defaulters hit home after City Council of Nairobi Town Clerk Philip Kisia published a list of the culprits. This was the most daring move yet in recovering over Sh14.8 billion owed in unpaid levies.

At the same time, City Hall has requested all property buyers to inquire about any arrears due on properties they intend to buy before carrying out ownership transfers. Kisia said there have been several cases of new property owners finding themselves owing lots of monies to the council by not doing due diligence.

Among those owing City Hall millions of shillings in rate arrears is former Kenya Airports Authority Managing Director George Muhoho, the embattled Truth Justice and Reconciliation Committee (TJRC) Chairman Bethwel Kiplagat, former minister Kipng’eno arap Ngeny and Member of Parliament, Alfred Sambu.

The list also includes Orie Rogo Manduli, Kenya Breweries, Kenya Postal and Telecommunications Corporation, Standard Chartered Bank, Braeburn Ltd, and Loyd Masika — who have arrears totaling over a million each.

City Hall now requires all the affected — 112 individuals and companies — to pay up or have their properties auctioned.

"Notice is hereby given that the due process that will lead to the auction of the listed properties situated within the jurisdiction of the City Council has now been commenced, on account of rate arrears payable to City Council," said a statement Kisia signed.

"That upon the completion of due legal procedure, any property affected herein or any other, as maybe applicable, shall be disposed of in compliance with the Rating Act Cap 267."

Also included in the list are Capital Markets Authority Chief Executive Officer Stella Kilonzo, who owes city hall just over half a million shillings, Garsen Member of Parliament Danson Mungatana, who owes the council Sh647, 000, former State House Comptroller Matere Keriri owing Sh860, 000, and former minister Joseph Munyao who owes the council just short of a million shillings.

Drastic measure

City Hall says it has taken the drastic measure after constant reminders to those affected proved fruitless.

City Hall says it has spent over Sh2.7 million on demand letters to the defaulters, insisting that they pay up within a fortnight, before finally moving to court to have the individuals and the companies forced to pay up the arrears.

Land rates are annual levies paid to local authorities by property owners on leasehold, and are used by the authorities in developing basic utilities and services, such as sewerage and roads construction as well as garbage collection services for the common good of all the inhabitants.

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