Sakaja promises to honour key election pledge of single business permit

Nairobi Governor-elect Johnson Sakaja.

Nairobi Governor-elect Johnson Sakaja displays his certificate after being declared by IEBC the winner at the Kasarani Tallying centre in Nairobi on August 14, 2022.

Photo credit: John Muchucha | Nation Media Group

Nairobi governor-elect Johnson Sakaja has said he will keep his promise to introduce a single QR-enabled permit that he said will prevent the need to have multiple licences and subsequently eliminate the hurdles of doing business in the city.

In his manifesto, Mr Sakaja committed to introduce an electronic unified single business permit and instant online licence renewal.

Currently, several permits are required, including county business permits, fire inspection certificates, food handler certificates, food hygiene, goodwill, and land rates.

These permits and licences are supposed to be renewed yearly.

On Tuesday, the new city boss was reminded about his pledge and promised to “get it done”.

Retailers also require the Music Copyright Society of Kenya (MCSK), Kenya Association of Music Producers (KAMP) and Performers Rights Society of Kenya (PRISK) approvals.

Loading zone approval

They must also have approvals from the Pharmacy and Poisons Board, a signage permit, an Energy and Petroleum Regulatory Authority (Epra) licence to sell LPG, a loading zone approval and a cook’s licence.

In his campaigns, Mr Sakaja said digitising the single permit would also reduce corruption and increase revenues.

“If you go to any business establishment today, right at the door you will see a big frame with like six, seven sometimes even 10 different licences that they have to comply with,” he said at the time.

He decried the tedious permit process, saying traders faced frustrations, harassment and extortion.

“What it does is that it takes away the time of that person to focus on making money to complying and that becomes an avenue for corruption,” he said.

He added that “today somebody comes to inspect whether you have the business permit, tomorrow somebody else comes to inspect whether you have the environmental licence, the next day somebody comes to inspect whether you have the fire licence”.

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