Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Is This Progress?

Today, I made the bold decision to handle a motor vehicle transfer personally. I tend to be the type of person who tries to do everything personally at least once, just to have the experience of doing so and to know what goes on. I needed to be in town quite early so I figured that rather than send a messesnger, I would do this one myself.

The process is thus:

- Go to Counter 21 (or 22..don't remember which one) to get the application approved and be informed how much it will cost.

- Go to Counter 20 to get an e-slip printed out (this states the name of the seller, name and PIN details of new owner and the fee payable.

- Go get 3 copies of the e-slip. This is done at the NOCK petrol station beside Times Towers.

- Go to either the National Bank of Kenya (NBK) branch at Harambee Avenue or sub branch on 5th Floor of Times Towers to pay the fee. (I chose the latter)

- Make a copy of the deposit slip from NBK (at the NOCK petrol station).

- Drop the application back at Counter 20 Times Towers banking hall on the ground floor. (Thankfully you do not have to queue for this step, you just walk up to the counter and drop the application off).

In my opinion, a country (government) that has such a long, cumbersome process for such a simple transaction is just not serious about becoming developed.

That will strike some as an extreme statement but I think that the first step towards creating an enabling environment is to make the simple things....simple. Then tackle the complicated things. Times Towers banking hall (and numerous other government offices) are places where the simplest is turned into the most cumbersome and complicated.

Streamlining this process would require little to no money, just a real commitment to ensure that citizens get the best possible service. The presence of such cumbersome processes in 2010 points to a lack of this real commitment.

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