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‘Are Kenyans safe?’ Martha Karua asks over Ruto’s ‘over taxation’

NARC Kenya party leader Martha Karua is a worried Kenyan politician.

This stems from her worries for Kenyans over the taxation being carried out by President William Ruto and his Kenya Kwanza government.

In a statement she issued on April 8, 2024, Ms Karua said Kenyans are suffering from over taxation and diminished accountability by the government.

“Kenyans have suffered under Ruto’s regime with punitive taxation of its citizens and diminishing accountability, embezzlement, corruption and diminishing services in each and every sector. The key question being are Kenyans safe?” began Ms Karua.

She went on to accuse the government of creating a toxic business environment that has seen local and foreign investors close up shop and relocate.

“The government is meant to create enabling environment for all Kenyans and create a vibrant economy for business to thrive. This (toxic environment) has injured our economy. All this is under the shameful watch of this regime which is out to destroy our beloved nation. This regime has deliberately gone rogue,” added Ms Karua.

She concluded by reminding Kenyans that they have “residue power”  and the power of the ballot to address “this serious deficit of leadership.”

“Let us stand and defend our 2010 Constitution that is our clarion call today to all Kenyans. This is our beloved country. Long live Kenya. God bless our beloved nation,” concluded Ms Karua.

Since President Ruto was sworn into office in September 2022, his government went ahead to increase existing taxes as well as introduce new hefty ones on goods and services.

Some of the far reaching taxes- largely driven by the International Monetary Fund- include:

  1. 1.5% housing levy paid by salaried employees and matched by employers
  2. Doubling the Value Added Tax on petroleum products which saw the cost of food and electricity driven up by great margins.
  3. Increasing costs of using mobile money platforms to send money
  4. Increased Turnover tax
  5. Increased excise duty on adverts on alcohol, betting, gaming, lotteries and prize competitions
  6. Increased income taxes for those earning above Sh 500,000 and Sh 800,000 monthly
  7. Tax on the transfer of digital assets such as cryptocurrencies
  8. Introduced mandatory Social Health Insurance Fund deductions
  9. Introduced 5% taxation on digital content creators for residents and 20% for non-residents
  10. Increased taxation on imported electronics
  11. Increased taxation on all traders including those who ship their goods through cargo consolidation.

The government claimed that the introduction and increase of taxes was in aims to reduce foreign borrowing and increase monies collected locally to enable them to run the government efficiently.

However, despite the over taxation, the government continues borrowing heftily and the current debt stands in the trillions within an unprecedented short period of time by a government of the day.

Also read: Haiti is no bed of roses for Kenya police, the US fears it, Orengo tells Ruto

Ruto regime wishing hunger and death for Kenyans- Martha Karua