The Kenya National Highways Authority (Kenha) had slapped an outrageous Sh. 46.8 million fine on a truck that was found to have overloaded its cargo.
Kenha, which is now detaining the truck, has also said that it will be charging the truck USD 50 (Sh. 8,000) daily parking fees.
The truck carrying sand and was stopped by Kenha officers and the Axle Load Enforcement and Highways Unit police officers on the morning of Thursday, January 18 at Mavoko, along Mombasa Road.
Kenha Senior Engineer Axle Load Control Kennedy Ndugire said it was found to have exceeded the normal weight of 54,000kg.
The fine has sent shock waves in the transportation business with Kenyans arguing that Kenha was out to kill the owner’s transportation business.
This is because the fine administered is way higher than the combined worth of the truck and load in question.
“This country is so anti business it’s just sad. If your child is wrong you don’t punish them by maiming or killing them. You correct them and make them better people for the future where they keep thriving,” Transporter Caroline Gikunda argued.
“What KENHA has done here is killed this business… And we will be crying of tough economic times when the government is eating her own kids through such bodies as KENHA.”
Some Kenyans also highlighted the truck owner’s inability to bribe his way out of the mess as the reason for the heavy fine. “We know Kenha asked for a bribe; the owner failed to raise it and they decided to punish him,” a netizen who identified as Moses remarked, noting that in such incidents, owners of trucks have been asked for bribes of up to Sh. 1 million by rogue officials.
However, Ndugire said that the vehicle will be auctioned off if the fine will not have been paid within 60 days.
“In 60 days, if the owner will not have paid the fine, he will be deemed to have forfeited the vehicle to the state and Kenha will get a court order to sell the vehicle,” he said.