Meru goes digital to plug revenue leaks

Kiraitu Murungi.
Meru governor Kiraitu Murungi. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

Meru County has contracted Jambo Pay, a digital payment platform, to automate its major revenue streams to stop pilferage and raise Sh1 million in the current year ending next July.

From Thursday, Meru residents and businesspeople will pay parking fees, cess, market fees, single business permits, land rates and advertising fees digitally.

Manual payments has been prone to theft of county funds and non-payment of services like parking and market fees.

The Kiraitu Murungi led administration has been striving to improve local collections which also determine the amount of sharable revenue allocated to the counties.

Meru raised Sh302 million in the nine months to May against an annual target of Sh821 million, up from the previous year’s Sh552 million.

Meru County Revenue Board General Manager Dr John Ntoiti said the digital payments will be rolled out on Thursday this week in partnership with Jambo Pay and Cooperative Bank.

Dr Ntoiti said Jambo Pay will facilitate payment platforms including mobile, credit and visa cards as well as through agents. Co-operative Bank will ensure collections are remitted on the same day besides providing agents.

“To pay, one will use a mobile USSD code *414# to register to the MeruPay platform. Money will be deposited in an e-wallet from which they can pay for various county fees and rates. This is meant to reach the unreached taxpayers to increase our local collections,” Dr Ntoiti said.

He said Jambo Pay will be required to remit the collections to the county government account on the same day.

Dr Ntiti said the automation comes even as the revenue board was striving to seal loopholes affecting collections in the county.