Toll charges the route to more paved roads, says official
What you need to know:
- The proposed road user fee has been condemned as double taxation since motorists already pay Sh18 for every litre of petrol and diesel towards roads maintenance.
The government has defended the plan to introduce toll charges on major highways, arguing that the current resources are insufficient for road maintenance and expansion.
Infrastructure Principal Secretary John Mosonik on Tuesday said efforts to expand and maintain more roads have been slowed by cash shortfalls despite the existence of road maintenance levy that is charged at the petroleum pump.
The proposed road user fee has been condemned as double taxation since motorists already pay Sh18 for every litre of petrol and diesel towards roads maintenance.
The fuel levy is expected to generate Sh50 billion this year against an annual target of Sh400 billion for infrastructure modernisation, presenting a massive gap, according to Mr Mosonik.
“The fuel levy is not enough to enable us expand our roads and keep them in top-notch conditions,” the PS told the Press during a summit on public-private partnerships (PPP) for roads.
Five roads have been earmarked for tolling, including Thika Road, the Southern Bypass, the Nairobi-Mombasa highway, the second Nyali Bridge and the Nairobi-Nakuru-Mau Summit highway.
Toll-free alternatives will be provided for those who do not want to pay as is global practice. The government plans to implement the tolling scheme in partnership with private developers who will finance the expansion and maintenance of the roads and later charge user fees to recoup their investment.