Nairobi City Council rotten – but at least they have a website

On a day when almost no one reads newspapers, except for “where the parties are” section, Nairobi City Council finally published their budget for the Year 2005 in the Nation of Friday, December 31st. Along with their budget for 2005, they also list some results from 2004, a year in which they collected Kshs 5.3 billion in revenue and spent Kshs 6.2 billion, running a deficit for the year of Kshs 900 million.

No wonder Nairobi is collapsing with just 11% spent on maintenance, 4% on operations and 0.1% (JUST Kshs 12 million!) spent on roads. The lion’s share – Kshs 4.2 billion of their expenses (2/3 or 67%) goes to personnel alone – i.e. city council staff and councillors. This is worse than a mafia rip-off; at least the mafia offers your business some protection and service for the money they take.

Of the city’s revenue, Kshs 1.2 billion came from property rates, Kshs 550 million from business permits, 100 million from market fees, 250 million from parking fees and 850 million from housing and others – what services do they provide to collect that money? I say scrap the whole thing and start again.