KISUMU, Kenya Oct. 5th - A section of the Kisumu County boda boda operators who took to the streets on Thursday to protest against a proposal to charge them a 500 shillings monthly levy met firm resistance from members of the public who insisted that they must pay taxes.
The largely peaceful demonstration was not taken kindly with irate members of the public at Kibuye market and the main bus park chasing them away with chants of 'Taxes must be paid by all responsible citizens"
"I am a disappointed a resident of this County because these fellows want to hold everyone at ransom as if they are above the law, i don't remember governor Nyong'o pledging to exempt them from taxation during his campaign" said a businessman at Kibuye market.
The chairman of kisumu county boda boda sacco Nicholas Odire says all they are asking for is a structured engagement with the county government before the proposal is implemented.
"The reason why we asking for a structural engagement with the governor is look at possibilities of harmonizing this fee to make it applicable across board, a boda boda rider in the CBD makes much more money than the one in the far flung areas like Nyakach and Seme" asserted Odire.
Speaking to the media during the demonstration, Odire says the services they are currently getting from county government is not comusurate to the levy they are expected to pay citing lack of enough shades and with no designated parkings for the riders.
Last Thursday, the county Assembly passed the 2017 finance bill that proposed a 500 shillings monthly levy on the boda boda sector.
All eyes are now on the governor who is expected to either ascend to bill or return it to the Assembly for further amendments once he gets back into the country next week from a foreign trip.