Azimio: Proposed budget is anti-people
Azimio la Umoja – One Kenya Coalition has expressed strong opposition to the revised Finance Bill 2023 for the budget estimates. Azimio Summit has said the budget proposal as irredeemably flawed and detrimental to the welfare of Kenyans.
The Opposition coalition has also said the proposed budget will only exacerbate the suffering of the people.
“We believe Kenyans have been hurting for a prolonged period of time. This Budget proposal prolongs and worsens the suffering of the people,” the coalition said in a statement.
Azimio further called on the government to instead cut taxes and moderate expenditure to foster the country’s prosperity. However, they argued that the Finance Bill does the opposite.
“As a party, we believe Kenyans will thrive when we cut, not when we increase taxes. This proposal increases taxes. We believe the country will thrive when we moderate our expenditure. This Bill raises expenditures and proposes to spend what we don’t have,” the coalition stated.
Azimio also voiced concerns over the proposed reduction in devolved powers and the adverse impact on the middle class.
“We believe the country will do better when we devolve more in line with the Constitution. This Bill proposes to devolve less and instead ask for more money for the national government for otherwise devolved functions.
“We believe our country will function better when we strengthen the Middle Class. This budget will kill the middle class, and when we kill the middle class, we hurt millions of our people.”
Azimio also criticized the Finance Bill 2023 for diminishing social protection, failing to encourage manufacturing and burdening the private sector with taxes. They expressed their concern over the negative impact on women, single mothers, youth and access to quality education.
“In a nutshell, we believe this country needs and deserves a people’s budget. We repeat. We believe in a people’s budget. We believe in a rights-based budget. That budget is coming. Kenyans will have a people’s budget,” the coalition said.
Azimio urged their Members of Parliament to reject the “anti-people” Bill and called upon Kenya Kwanza MPs to stand with the people. They also called on the general public to assess whether the proposed budget serves their welfare and to voice their concerns to their MPs.