Over-taxation will only worsen economy

National Treasury Cabinet Secretary Prof Njuguna Ndung'u. Since much of government revenue goes to salaries, let it reduce expenditure on salaries.

For the past couple of months, the Finance Bill 2023 has been the talk of the town with most people expressing their feelings towards it. In the ailing economy, introducing more taxes will only do more harm than help to improve the situation. 

Most companies are on the verge of collapse due to the increased cost of production, which has made their operations unsustainable. With the increased cost of inputs, prices of agricultural products have increased, with less revenue to the farmers. 

The high cost of basic commodities has made life unbearable for ordinary Kenyans with more than half living below the poverty line. The increased cost of petroleum products has further increased the cost of production, hence the price of produce.

With the increasing number of unemployed people every day, the country’s GDP is way too low. Imposing new taxes on such an economy will lead to the closure of industries and companies, rendering more people jobless. 

Besides, these taxes will scare away investors who could be willing to invest in our country. 

The government should focus on other ways to support the economy other than overtaxing the failing economy. It should provide incentives to local industries to reduce the cost of imports to the economy. 

Sadly, we spend a lot on importing sugar, maize and other foods which we can locally produce and process. 

Since much of government revenue goes to salaries, let it reduce expenditure on salaries. The proposed list of additional CASs should be scrapped since it’s just a political reward for those who supported Kenya Kwanza’s election. The rewards include big offices, huge salaries and other stipends at the expense of ordinary citizens. Maintaining such a calibre of a Cabinet is way too harsh for the ailing economy. 

David Kinyanjui, Nairobi

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It is time for the government to prioritise the election promises made by its leaders. They have become a mirage for the ‘hustlers’ who voted it in.

Kenyans expected the cost of living to reduce but were met by higher fuel prices while the Finance Bill 2023 will raise taxes.

Monicah Maina, Nairobi