Wrangles over county tender paralyze revenue collection in Kilifi

Wrangles over county tender paralyze revenue collection in Kilifi

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Kilifi County government Askaris take control of Kilifi Bridge Cess Centre

Tension remained high in parts of Kilifi on Monday following tussles between the county Askaris and employees of a private company  whose contract of collecting revenue on behalf of the county government was reportedly cancelled.

More than 30 county Askaris and the company workers have reportedly been injured in a week long tussles.

The clashes erupted early last week after Kilifi County government cancelled the revenue collection contract and directed the county askaris to allegedly storm and take charge of the revenue collection points, which the company staff resisted.

On Wednesday, the two groups engaged in a serious fight at Kwandomo and Kilifi bridge cess stations leaving several askaris and the company employees injured.

“We had gone there to implement court orders but Raindrops officials demanded to get an official statement from our seniors and we came back,’’ one of the county askaris said.

It was  earlier reported that the  county government had  allegedly hired goons armed with batons to invade the revenue collection station and demand to be allowed to collect revenue but were repelled by the company security which the county officials denied.

Later the County Inspectorate officers (Askaris) managed to take control of the Kilifi bridge, Tezo and Bofa cess stations.

“We are not here to fight our colleagues they are our brother and sisters, our mandate is to collect revenue,’’ said one of the Raindrop team.

Meanwhile, Kilifi County government said they fear losing millions of shilling in revenue if the push and pull continues to derail revenue collections.

John Harold Kombe, the county finance minister confirmed on Friday “the government has already lost more than 5 million of revenue since the beginning of the week”

Raindrops limited, the company that had been collecting revenue for the county, lost the tender after  Kilifi Court ruled in favor of the county government.

According to the ruling signed by the Deputy registrar of the High Court in Malindi , the county government was directed to collect income and pay  staff involved in the collection of revenue directly.

The County government was however directed to pay Raindrops limited a 30 percent share plus VAT every month.

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