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Raila: You can’t introduce Housing Fund in a depressed economy

Opposition leader, Raila Odinga, has continued to criticise the proposals in the Finance Bill 2023, saying it will be an insult to Kenyans if Parliament passes it.

Addressing residents in Yatta at the Wiper Democratic Party prayer meeting, Mr Odinga said the opposition will not allow the Kenya Kwanza government to impose more taxes on Kenyans at a time when the cost of living in the country has skyrocketed.

Mr Odinga said the Housing Fund proposed in the Bill is not a priority and that President William Ruto and his government should have sought his advice on this matter.

“You can’t introduce additional taxes when the economy is in recession. You can’t do that,” Mr Odinga said, while stating that the three per cent deduction from both employer and employee as proposed in the Bill will be unsustainable.

Also read: President Ruto enumerates merits of his affordable housing scheme

The Azimio la Umoja – One Kenyan Coalition leader said the era of imposing things on Kenyans is over.

This comes even as the state continues to lobby for the housing fund, which many Kenyans are yet to fully comprehend.

Commenting on the stalemate between the Azimio and Kenya Kwanza teams in the bipartisan talks, Mr Odinga said they will only resume the talks if their concerns are addressed by the government.

He also revisited the question of opening the Independent Electoral and Boundaries (IEBC) servers and the process of recruiting new commissioners.

Also read: Nyeri pastor claims Ruto’s affordable housing scheme is only for the rich

According to Mr Odinga, there are plans to change the IEBC servers at the moment, which he said is being closely monitored by his team.

The Azimio leader also called on the government to desist from meddling in the affairs of the Jubilee Party, which an affiliate party of Azimio la Umoja.

“Jubilee tulilipa mahari, ni yetu. Na wamekataa kutoka (We paid the dowry price for Jubilee. It’s ours as much as they have refused to leave),” he said.

Mr Odinga further reiterated that Jubilee MPs who have joined the government must resign from their positions and be ready for seek a fresh mandate from the voters.

The opposition has also asked the Registrar of Political Parties, Anne Nderitu, to accept the changes agreed by the Jubilee Party at their recent meeting.

Also read: KOT demand to know where their area MP stands on 3% housing levy