Trans Nzoia county workers threaten to strike over tax hike in 2023 budget
County Government workers in Trans Nzoia County have threatened to down their tools if the National Assembly will go ahead to approve new tax regimes proposed by President William Ruto’s administration through the Finance Bill 2023-24.
From the proposals, the National Treasury is targeting top income earners, M-Pesa transactions and fuel consumers to raise an additional KES 364 billion in taxes for the new budget in a revenue collection plan that will see workers’ pay, already ravaged by inflation, shrink further.
The Chairman of the Kenya County Government Workers Union in Trans Nzoia Samuel Kiboi said the new taxations would pose a great burden to their members who have been hit hard by the rising cost of living occasioned by the country’s economic downtown.
“The concern of civil servants is pay rise and not the introduction of extra levies that are only meant to benefit a few. We are cash-strapped since what we earn is not enough to meet our demands,” Kiboi said. He spoke on Wednesday in Kitale.
Kiboi challenged the President to focus on coming up with policies that will contain government wastage through expenditures that are not of priority to Kenyans and seal all loopholes of corruption instead of overtaxing civil servants.
“If the proposals are passed into law, we will be left with no option but to withdraw our services since it is against the international labour laws for the government to impose punitive taxation on its citizen,” he said.
Last week, Saboti MP Caleb Amisi and his Kiminini counterpart Kakai Bissau said the country cannot stabilize its economy by overburdening the taxpayer through high taxation and should instead develop policies that support economic growth.
“No country can prosper through overlapping her citizen. I challenge the president to scout for better economic advice on how to turn around the economy since his advisors have failed,” Amisi spoke at the CDF office in Kitale.