Nairobi City County faults Rotich over remarks on Sh62bn owed by State

National Treasury Cabinet Secretary Henry Rotich. PHOTO | JEFF ANGOTE
National Treasury Cabinet Secretary Henry Rotich. PHOTO | JEFF ANGOTE 

The Nairobi County government has hit out at Treasury Cabinet Secretary Henry Rotich, saying it had already written to him on the Sh62 billion debt owed to them by national government.

Mr Rotich on Tuesday said he had not seen Nairobi Governor Evans Kidero’s request to the National Treasury to pay Sh62 billion owed to the county.

He had said he would "deal with” the matter once it has been brought to his desk.

However, in a letter to Dr Kidero dated August 29, 2016 seen by the Nation, Treasury Principal Secretary Dr Kamau Thugge acknowledged receipt and a directed concerned ministries to clear the debt.

“The National Treasury has taken this matter seriously and has directed all ministries, departments and agencies that owe Nairobi City County any money to address the matter urgently,” read the letter in part.

In the letter, Mr Thugge urged the county government to provide location and lease agreements of the parking bays to enable the Treasury pay a a debt of Sh 8.8 million in respect of the matter.

“The National Treasury or the Ministry of Finance then is indicated that it owes Sh 8.8 million respect to loading zones. To assist the National Treasury settle this outstanding payment we are requesting your office to provide location and lease agreement for parking bays,” reads the letter.

Dr Kidero has already petitioned the Senate to recover Sh61.5 billion from the national government that he said had accrued from, among others, unpaid land rates on government buildings.

'I have not seen the bill'

“You know I have not really seen the bill Dr Kidero is talking about. He should send it to my office and we’d see how to deal with it, “Mr Rotich said at City Hall on Tuesday.

Mr Rotich was responding to a request by Commission on Revenue Allocation (CRA) chairman Micah Cheserem during the fifth annual conference of Constitutional Commissions and Independent Offices.

“And as he comes to speak, I want CS Rotich to tell us why he owes Dr Kidero a lot of money,” Mr Cheserem said as he invited the CS.

Dr Kidero had claimed that the national government has defaulted and had failed to pay the money over the years.

“The Senate should facilitate structured negotiations between the Nairobi County and the Ministry of Defence and other concerned national government ministries towards ensuring payment to the city of the sum owed to it of Sh61.5 billion,” Dr Kidero said in a June 30 letter.

The Parliamentary Service Commission has a Sh48.67 million debt to the devolved unit, Government Press (Sh39.44 million) while Transport ministry owes City Hall Sh34.65 million.

On reserved parking, debt by the national government is 390.94 million, with the Deputy President’s office on Harambee Avenue owes Sh125.78 million, followed by Police Service (Sh70 million), Kenya Revenue Authority (Sh45.8 million) and Central Bank of Kenya (Sh48.76 million).