The Senate Standing Committee on Devolution and Intergovernmental Relations on Wednesday approved Eldoret's bid to become the fifth Kenyan city.
The Senate Committee in its report stated that Eldoret met all the necessary requirements to become a city as outlined in Section 5 and the First Schedule of the Urban Areas and Cities Act, 2011.
Eldoret is the capital of Uasin Gishu County, home to President William Ruto.
The approval now awaits Ruto's endorsement before it can become the fifth city after Nairobi, Mombasa, Kisumu and Nakuru.
Parliament of Kenya
Nakuru attained the city status in 2021.
Reacting to the news, Uasin Gishu Governor Jonathan Bii stated, "We now eagerly await the charter that will officially grant us the status of the fifth city."
Delivering its report for consideration, the Committee noted that during the assessment of Eldoret, it had engaged the Uasin Gishu County leadership, the National Government and Senate leadership headed by Speaker Amason Kingi.
As per the law, the Senate Devolution Committee further held public participation with residents of Eldoret on their views on the elevation of their municipality to city status.
To be conferred a city status, a town must have over 250,000 residents. According to data from the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS), Eldoret has a population of 475,716 people.
“The municipality has the capacity to generate sufficient revenue to sustain its operation since its revenue potential is Sh2.5 billion, with the highest actual collection of Sh900 million in the last financial year,” the Committee noted.
According to the Urban Areas and Cities Act, 2011, the President may, on the resolution of the Senate, confer the status of a city on a municipality that meets the set criteria, by grant of a charter in the prescribed form.
Other requirements to confer municipality a city status include; an integrated urban area or city development plan and demonstrable good system and records of prudent management.
Additionally, the municipality must have infrastructure to support it, including but not limited to roads, street lighting and markets, and an adequate capacity for disaster management as well as a capacity for functional and effective waste disposal.