A lobby has filed a lawsuit challenging the newly introduced parking fees at Nairobi’s Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA), arguing that they are exorbitant and exploitative to the general public.
The managing trustees of the Nairobi Foundation claim that the increase was done arbitrarily without public participation.
With effect from April 15, a review of the rates by Kenya Airports Authority (KAA) shows that any saloon car accessing the airport and parking for under 20 minutes is charged Ksh100 ($1).
Owners of saloon cars parked at the airport’s drop-off and pick-up zone for between 20 and 40 minutes will pay Ksh250 ($2.5) while those parked for up to one hour will pay Ksh350 ($3.5) and those staying for up to two hours Ksh500 ($5).
The petitioner is seeking a “declaration that the decision to increase parking fees at JKIA is unconstitutional.”
Nairobi Foundation has listed Kenya Airports Parking Services (KAPS), KAA, Cabinet secretaries of Transport and Finance, and the Attorney-General as respondents.
The petitioner claims that the increased parking fees at JKIA will escalate what taxi operators charge passengers, and increase overhead costs for companies that import and export through the airport.
They add that KAA can only exercise its powers to increase the parking fees in accordance with the law and not arbitrarily without public and stakeholder participation.
The decision to introduce the parking rates has been met with uproar from various airport users.
JKIA, the busiest and fastest growing logistical hub in eastern and central Africa, currently handles an average of 7.5 million passengers yearly.
KAA had in an earlier statement indicated that it’s looking into ways of increasing its revenue streams from its infrastructure services.
The agency is planning a new facility that will, upon completion, further increase capacity by an additional 20 million passengers annually.
“With KAA’s development of Terminal 1A, 1E and 2, JKIA’s annual capacity has increased to 7.5 million passengers, closer to her 2020 envisioned handling target of 10.5 million passengers per annum,” said KAA earlier.