Mombasa Deputy Governor Francis Thoya has slammed President William Ruto on claims of privatizing the port of Mombasa through the back door.
The DG claimed that the concession the president has been championing for makes no difference with privatization that the same government has been talking about.
He said the port has been making profit ever since and the so called consession cannot double up the profits.
He however wants the government to come clear on two issues.
“We want us to understand our stake as the people of Mombasa. We also want that agreement to be laid bare to us.” He said.
He says the government should instead put another investment instead of moving ahead with concession.
“We are now seeing a new wave of cartels in town. They always make frequent visits in this town.” He pointed out.
OWN SOURCE REVENUE
Asked on the revenue that the county generates internally Thoya said the graph has been rising.
“In 2013 the revenue was about 1.8b. In 2022 the same revenue has risen to 3.9Bn almost threefold.
He however noted that a potential exists to upscale the revenue.
He attributed the rise to the automation of county government services, which he says has sealed all the loopholes.
“Apart from automation we have also reduced all the revenue leakages and ensured that we are fully compliant, said the DG.
BALLOONING WAGE BILL
The DG also lamented of a balloning wage bill
“We have been employing new staff to assist in the delivery of services which has in turn led to a high wage bill”
Meanwhile Coast Civil Society Organization Chairman Zedekiah Adika has threatened to move to court should the government fail to rescind the privatization and concession moves.
He notes that the port of Mombasa has been a lifeline to the locals adding that the move will lead to an economic strain in the region.
Adika further claimed that there has never been a single public participation at the port of Mombasa.
He pointed out “This port belongs to the people of this region,”
On the issue of accountability at the county government of Mombasa Adika said “there’s a need for the county government to ensure that it is transparent, accountable and responsible on her finances,”
He further asked the county government to devise ways of bringing in more investors further urging for a proper use of the revenue.
He said they are training a cohort of Ugatuzi champions to conduct a social audit of some of the public facilities within the county.
“We have completed a three-day training that comprises of 21 champions as we speak. Some of these facilities include Likoni Changamwe and Junda.” He said
At the same time, Patrick Ochieng a human rights and governance expert called on the champions to remain vigilant even as they prepare to move to the facilities.
He however asked the county to allocate a budget for the champions as they prepare to move to the grassroot health facilities.
On his part Mombasa deputy governor Francis Thoya said the county government of Mombasa is committed to ensure that the exists a conducive business for business to thrive.
He says Mombasa locals have a constitutional right to keep the county on check.
“We are willing and ready to work with CSOs. You have a right to get that essential service. And you are doing the right thing to check on the services being delivered” The DG noted.
He noted that counties are meant to provide services to the locals.
“This is your money and we are happy to get your feedback. This will assist us change tact where need be,” The second in command said