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Amend Finance Bill and re-constitute IEBC- clerics to Ruto

By Gerald Mukembu

Clergies from Meru, Tharaka Nithi, Isiolo, and Marsabit counties have appealed to President William Ruto and Members of Parliament to make further amendments to the 2024 Finance Bill.

The clerics under the umbrella of the National Council of Churches of Kenya (NCCK) led by their regional chairman Nicholas Nteere called upon the national assembly members to rethink the Finance Bill currently before the house.

“Remove the oppressive and suppressing tax clauses that are affecting people’s cost of living. Taxation should be done bearing the needs of people, realistic to raise revenue without burdening business enterprises and closing businesses,” Nteere said during a press briefing at the Gitoro Conference Centre.

Nteere added that laws, policies and plans made by any government must focus on securing and improving people’s living standards.

He urged policymakers to conduct public participation to avoid a re-cup of disorderly and lawlessness through protesting as being witnessed over the Finance Bill.

Following a public outcry, the government retracted some proposed taxes on the controversial finance bill. The scrapped off-tax proposals include the 16 %VAT on bread, VAT on the transportation of sugar, VAT on financial services and foreign exchange transactions. Mobile money transfer fee will remain unaffected, Motor Vehicle circulation tax stand at 2.5% while Excise duty on vegetable oil and locally manufactured products, including sanitary towels, diapers, phones, computers, tires, and motorcycles, will not be included in the Eco Levy, Levies on the Housing Fund and Social Health Insurance will become income tax deductible. Income tax on the levies was as well scraped off.

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