President Ruto right in pushing Kenyans to pay tax
What you need to know:
- Ensuring that every Kenyan pays tax would be the best solution to solving the country’s economic challenges, creating a more equitable society by redistributing wealth and providing for those in need.
- It is, therefore, important that all citizens pay taxes on time and in full.
- The current state of the economy is not good and that’s why the President is pushing for the payment of taxes.
Collection of taxes, according to the World Bank, is a key development priority since it is a fundamental way for countries to generate public revenues for them to finance investments in human capital, infrastructure and provision of services for the citizens and businesses as well as set the right price incentives for sustainable private-sector investment.
President William Ruto has been pushing to ensure that all Kenyans pay tax, claiming that we are all equal before the law and should, therefore, pay our taxes in accordance with one’s income is justified. He reiterated that no Kenyan will be exempted from paying their fair share of taxes.
The move by the Ruto administration is justified. Article 210 of the Constitution states that no law may exclude or authorise the exclusion of a state officer from payment of tax by reason of the office held by that state officer or the nature of the work of the state officer.
The President is right to say all Kenyans, including some unnamed people who have been accused of tax evasion, must pay taxes irrespective of their status and, therefore, there would be no tax waivers in the country.
Ensuring that every Kenyan pays tax would be the best solution to solving the country’s economic challenges, creating a more equitable society by redistributing wealth and providing for those in need. It is, therefore, important that all citizens pay taxes on time and in full.
The current state of the economy is not good and that’s why the President is pushing for the payment of taxes. The economy was adversely affected, not only by the Covid-19 pandemic since 2020 and the 2022 General Election and also alleged poor governance by the previous government. It needs to be restored, or rather, improved by the current government. But that cannot be achieved if some Kenyans are not paying taxes as required.
Over the years, there has been positive tax and revenue growth due to improved tax compliance from patriotic Kenyan taxpayers. This has been possible because of the various transformation from the past governments and the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA), including the implementation of a high-performance culture as well as strict enforcement of tax laws. The fight against tax evasion has involved letting betting companies and also other businesses pay taxes.
The people running cash businesses were said to have been pocketing money from the cash registers without reporting their income.
By the government pushing all Kenyans to pay taxes, the effects of tax evasion that cut across economic sectors and negatively affect Kenyans—such as the poor state of the economy, huge unemployment rate, food shortage, high commodity prices, inequalities and the general high cost of living—will be resolved.
Emmanuel Rono, Kisumu