MPs react to budget, trash State's plan

East African Community Cs Peter Munya(L) chat with MPs Richard Tongi (Nyaribarichache), William Kassait Kamket (Tiati) and Moses Lossonet (Eldama Ravine) after the Budget 2018-2019 reading at Parliament on Thursday 14/06/18 [Boniface Okendo,Standard]
Taxes imposed on mobile money transfer services and kerosene will hurt the common man, some lawmakers said Thursday.

Others dismissed the Government’s revenue collection measures as a fishing expedition.

National Assembly Leader of Minority John Mbadi said the Government was most likely to fail in meeting its revenue target.

“This is a budget that cannot be financed. The Government is either going to fail to implement its programmes or resort to another fresh borrowing spree,” said Mr Mbadi.

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Deputy Minority Whip Chris Wamalwa said imposing higher taxes on kerosene would hurt the poor, who are already struggling with the high cost of living. The Kiminini MP said Parliament would seek to amend the Budget through the Finance Bill.

“This is a bogus budget; how do you tax mobile money transfers? (Treasury Cabinet Secretary Henry Rotich) was basically engaging in a fishing expedition to get money everywhere. This is not a budget for the common mwananchi,” he said.

Over-borrowed

Ugunja MP Opiyo Wandayi said the budget, if implemented as it is, would force the Government to continue with external borrowing. His Dagoretti North counterpart Simba Arati said the budget was a sign that the Government had over-borrowed and over-spent.

“I am very disappointed that this budget did not factor in the contribution of small-scale farmers,” Cheranganyi MP Joshua Kuttuny added. 

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But Kipipiri MP Amos Kimunya said Mr Rotich had done a good balancing act, considering the huge challenges the country is currently facing.

And Kitui East MP Makali Mulu said: “It is a good budget; my only worry and what I know will be a challenge is implementation. We have seen it in the past where implementing the budget becomes a challenge.”

[Moses Nyamori, Moses Njagi and Rawlings Otieno]

Taxesmobile money transferBudgetnational treasury cabinet secretary henry rotich