The Ministry of Roads and Transport is gauging public opinion on a potential rise in the fuel levy, a move that could significantly impact pump prices across the country.

The proposed amendment would increase the Road Maintenance Levy on petrol and diesel by Sh7 per litre, taking it from the current Sh18 to Sh25.

Public participation forums kicked off today in Nairobi, Central, North Rift, South Rift, Upper Eastern, Lower Eastern, Nyanza, North Eastern, and Coast regions.

The Ministry, led by Cabinet Secretary Kipchumba Murkomen, seeks public and stakeholder input before potentially revising the Road Maintenance Levy Fund (Imposition of Levy) Order, 2016.

"In accordance with Article 10 of the Constitution of Kenya on public participation," the Ministry announced in a public notice, "we invite members of the public and stakeholders to various public participation forums."

The forums will be held today, Monday, 8th July 2024, from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM.

Murkomen previously addressed the Parliamentary Finance and National Planning Committee, highlighting the need for a review as the levy has remained unchanged since 2016.

The proposed increase is expected to generate an additional Sh32 billion for the government, boosting the current annual collection of Sh83 billion from the Road Maintenance Levy Fund.

These additional funds, according to Murkomen, would be crucial for road repairs and construction.

Kenya faces a road maintenance gap of Sh315 billion between 2023 and 2027, a figure that exceeds the projected Road Maintenance Levy Fund collections.

The potential levy increase comes at a time when fuel prices are already at record highs.

If implemented, the proposal would likely push prices even higher, prompting concerns from Kenyans grappling with a rising cost of living.

Public participation forums offer a crucial platform for citizens to voice their opinions on this significant proposal, ultimately shaping the future of road infrastructure development and fuel affordability in Kenya.