Kenyans Hit by Steep Fee Increases for Government Services
In a move that has sparked outrage among Kenyans, the Kenya Kwanza government has implemented a significant hike in fees for a range of government services. The revised fees, published in the Kenya Gazette by Interior CS Kithure Kindiki, affect a wide array of services, including the issuance of national IDs, birth certificates, and passports.
One of the most notable changes is the increase in the fee for replacing a lost national ID, which has jumped from Ksh100 to a staggering Ksh2,000. This represents a 20-fold increase and is likely to cause financial hardship for many Kenyans, particularly those from low-income households.
Similarly, the cost of obtaining a birth certificate has increased from Ksh50 to Ksh200, while those seeking to change details on their ID cards will now have to pay Ksh1,000, up from Ksh300. These increases are likely to add to the administrative burden for Kenyans, making it more difficult and expensive to access essential government services.
The fee hikes also extend to civil servants and staff seeking to obtain identification cards or badges. The cost of a civil servant’s card has increased from Ksh100 to Ksh1,000, while staff badges will now cost Ksh1,000, up from Ksh350.
In addition to the fee increases, the government has also revised charges for late registration of birth and death certificates. Late registration of a birth certificate will now cost Ksh150, while late registration of a death certificate will cost Ksh500, up from Ksh150. These changes are likely to impact those who have not registered their births or deaths on time, potentially causing further inconvenience and financial strain.
The fee hikes have been met with widespread criticism from Kenyans, who accuse the government of milking them dry. Many have expressed frustration over the timing of the increases, particularly in light of the current economic challenges faced by the country.
Opposition leader Raila Odinga has also spoken out against the fee hikes, calling them insensitive and unfair to ordinary Kenyans. He has accused the government of prioritizing profit over the welfare of its citizens.
The fee increases come at a time when many Kenyans are already struggling to make ends meet. The high cost of living, coupled with rising unemployment, has put a significant strain on household budgets. The additional burden of these increased fees is likely to exacerbate the financial difficulties faced by many Kenyans.
The government’s justification for the fee hikes is that they are necessary to cover the rising costs of providing government services. However, many Kenyans remain skeptical of this explanation, believing that the government is simply taking advantage of its monopoly on these services to generate additional revenue.
The fee increases are likely to have a significant impact on the lives of Kenyans. They will make it more difficult for people to access essential government services, adding to the administrative burden and financial strain they already face. The government needs to reconsider these fee hikes and find more equitable ways to fund the provision of government services.