Court suspends new Kisumu County land rates

Manyatta Estate in Kisumu County. [Collins Oduor, Standard]

Property owners in Kisumu have received temporary relief after a court stopped the county government from implementing new land rates.

Environment and Lands Court Judge Anthony Ombwayo ordered that the new rates be suspended until February 24 when a suit challenging the increment is heard.

The county government increased the rates by more than double after valuation of property in the city and the seven sub-counties that dot Kisumu. 

The increase sparked an uproar from property owners who said the calculations were irrational.

Some property owners who used to pay Sh100,000 per year computed from the fixed asset returns had been asked to pay Sh201,000.

Those who used to pay Sh50,000 had their rates increased to Sh100,000. Other increases shot beyond 100 per cent because of the accrued penalty charges levied on the defaulters.

Most of the affected property is in the Kisumu Municipality block 6 to 12, Nyalenda B, Obunga, Manyatta, Mamboleo, Lolwe estates, Otonglo and Milimani.

Kisumu County Governor Anyang' Nyong'o (right) accompanied by LAPTRUST and County Pension Fund officials at Anderson Estate in Kisumu on December 10,2020 where they launched affordable housing project. The county and LAPTRUST wants to build sh.3b low cost residential houses. [Denish Ochieng, Standard]

The court case was filed by a Manyatta resident John Obure who sought for suspension of the gazetted Draft Valuation Roll by the county government.

In the suit filed under a certificate of urgency, Obure questioned the rationale used in charging the rates.

Home & Away established that the county carried out the valuation through various land survey firms at a cost of Sh90 million, of which Sh60 million has been paid.

The valuation exercise was done in three years and started during the administration of Jack Ranguma.

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