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Khalwale casts reservations on Housing Fund

Kakamega Senator Boni Khalwale says Kenyans should not be forced to contribute to the Housing Fund.

Speaking during an interview with Citizen TV, Khalwale, a government allied politician, further urged for caution and public participation in the implemention of this fund.

“My take is Kenyans who want to contribute towards this fund should be allowed to. Those not interested should be left to be.”

If implemented, the Housing Fund proposal, which has attracted varied reactions from Kenyans, will ensure employers pay 3% of their monthly salaries to support President William Ruto’s plan to provide affordable housing to Kenyans.

That amount will be matched by the employer and the government says Kenyans who do not get to own houses will be refunded their cash upon retirement.

Despite his reservation, Khalwale has urged Kenyans to give the proposal a chance, citing a similar situation two decades ago when Kenyans were skeptical about the free education program fronted by former president Mwai Kibaki.

“In 2003 when Mwai Kibaki and Michael Kijana Wamalwa campaigned on a strong platform of free primary education (people) said it is not possible. They had refused to do forward-thinking, which is what we are doing now,” he said.

The vocal politician further argued that funds realised from the tax will serve as a surety to real estate investors.

“Developer fear going to the bank and collecting money to put up houses because people who take them will eventually default. The banks fear giving developers money because they know it will be a bad loan,” the senator said.

“But now because of this clear thinking, banks will release money and developers will take the risk because the money which is pulled from the fund is guaranteed.”

President Ruto has urged Kenyans to embrace the fund, saying it will help solve the perennial problem of a lack of affordable housing in Kenya.

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