The National Treasury has stated that the government has not overburdened Kenyans with excessive taxes. According to Treasury Principal Secretary Chris Kiptoo, the focus should not solely be on the amount of money collected through taxes, but rather on how that revenue is utilized.
Kiptoo emphasized the importance of productivity and ensuring value for money in government expenditures. The state aims to rationalize spending and ensure that it maximizes the benefits derived from the allocated funds. This approach aligns with the government’s commitment to accountability and efficiency.
Regarding revenue generation, Kiptoo highlighted the government’s objective of ensuring that every Kenyan contributes to the tax base in a fair and equitable manner. The principle behind taxation is that individuals should pay according to their ability. By collectively raising resources, citizens fulfill their responsibility in obtaining the desired services from the government. In turn, Kenyans have the right to demand transparency and accountability in the utilization of these funds.
Recently, the Finance and National Planning Committee of the National Assembly presented the amended Finance Bill, 2023, following public input. Some proposals in the Bill faced criticism from Kenyans, who deemed them harsh or punitive.
However, during parliamentary proceedings, Members of Parliament voted in favor of the Finance Bill 2023, advancing it to the committee of the whole House for further deliberations. This move followed a vigorous debate in Parliament, where 176 out of 257 MPs supported the proposed tax measures at the second reading stage. On the other hand, 81 MPs opposed them.
In the upcoming week, the Committee will meticulously examine the Bill, considering each clause and voting on potential amendments. This process allows MPs to voice their concerns and potentially influence the final content of the Bill.