Tenants in over 5,000 residential units owned by the County government of Nakuru will now pay their rents through a newly upgraded digital platform.
The upgraded ‘Zizi’ platform which will also be used for payment of parking fees, licenses and land rates had been designed to seal loopholes through which millions of shillings were lost daily in cash payments for parking and other services.
“The system is an improvement of the previous one that we inherited from the defunct Municipal Council. In the old system data was collected and stored manually which made it difficult for revenue officers to audit it or for tenants to follow up whenever their payments were not reflected,” explained Mr. Lwanga.
Mr. Lwanga said ‘Zizi’ platform which can be downloaded on Google Play Store and Apple Store tracks history of all transactions increasing accountability and transparency.
“There were cases when tenants of the county owned premises would complain that they paid rent but would later be told by revenue clerks and enforcement officers that they had not paid.
“This will be a thing of the past,” The head of revenue stated.
He said the devolved unit was working to completely eliminate cash collections and transactions as a way of plugging revenue collection deficits.
The new development is a plus for the County that has in the recent past also put in place a system that enables motorists to pay their parking fees using online money platforms
“Through USSD Code *860# motorists can pay for their parking fees from the comfort of their homes or offices. It is especially easy when they cannot locate parking attendants. We are moving to eliminate cases where tenants who have paid their rents are evicted as transactions will be captured in a centralized database.
The system has also been tailored to enable the County government to project revenue collection, making it possible to prepare a reliable budget” explained Mr. Lwanga.
The County Revenue chief noted that Zizi’ platform will be updated further to enable land owners and developers apply for approvals online and generate the required forms digitally.
He said the centralized system will enable integration of third parties such as banks which will provide different payment modes for payment of land rates and business licenses.
The application is compatible with both Android and Apple devices.
The upgrade is part of Governor Lee Kinyanjui’s ambitious project to automate all revenue collection streams within the devolved unit.
The County government has also fully adopted automated revenue collection technology in over 95 percent of public health facilities to enhance service delivery and accountability.
Lwanga said the business community in Nakuru will also continue paying levies to the county government through designated banks and not by cash.
These are Equity Bank, Cooperative Bank, Family Bank, National Bank and KCB bank.
After paying to the banks, the client takes the bank slip to the sub county offices where they are issued with receipts.
The issuing officers check the serial number of the receipts online against real time bank statements,” he stated
Mr. Lwanga said that the business community has responded to the Zizi’ platform upgrade with delight because they are optimistic their money will be used for the purposes it is meant for.
He was optimistic that the payment platform will greatly enhance revenue collection and efficiency in the devolved unit.
“We are ensuring that no government officials come into contact with cash money. All they do is to certify that the money has indeed been paid to the relevant departments,” he said.
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