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Government has right to raise taxes na Kulipa mtalipa, mpende msipende – CS Moses Kuria defends Finance Bill 2024

Public Service Cabinet Secretary Moses Kuria has defended the government against criticism over the Finance Bill 2024 which proposes a raft of tax proposals.

Speaking on Citizen TV, CS Kuria said the government has the right to impose taxes to fund its budget.

“It is the legitimate right of any government, in Kenya or anywhere in the world, to raise taxes. There is no other source of money for a government to run other than raising taxes,” said Kuria.

The CS argued that a government is constitutionally obligated to increase taxes or borrow from other governments if its current revenue sources are insufficient.

“When we borrow, we borrow for one reason; because we can’t raise enough taxes. The only legitimate, bonafide source of money for running government is by raising taxes,” he said.

The Finance Bill 2024 has elicited massive reactions among Kenyan with several institutions and corporate bodies expressing reservation against some of its proposals.

Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops (KCCB), Safaricom and Matatu Owners Association are some of the entities that have opposed the bill.

LSK President Faith Odhiambo on her part said introducing additional tax burdens on lower-income Kenyans, who already struggle with the high cost of living, directly impacts their means of livelihood and quality of life.

“The Bill proposes to increase the excise duty rates applicable to telephone and internet data services, as well as money transfer services, from 15 per cent to 20 per cent,” Odhiambo said.

“Notably, the Finance Act 2023 had previously reduced the excise duty on telephone and internet data services from 20 per cent to 15 per cent.” 

Moses Kuria

Author: Alex

Alex is a Kenyan blogger writing on technology, fraud, social media and politics at Nairobi Today.

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