Fuel prices are set to hike making the economy tougher for Kenyans after the majority of MPs voted to pass the 16% VAT on fuel from the initial 8%.
184 MPs approved the contentious proposal in the Finance Bill, 2023 against the 84 who opposed the amendment, setting the stage for what could see the cost of fuel rise by more than Ksh.10.
The MPs who voted against the clause argued that an increase in fuel who largely affect everything else which will make life very expensive for Kenyans.
Minority Whip Junet Mohamed warned of a revolution in the country, terming the decision to pass the clause as ‘most offensive’ to Kenyans.
“This is the most offensive clause in this bill. When you increase VAT from 8 to 16% that is one thing that is going to make life very expensive for Kenyans,” said Junet.
“Kenya Kwanza told us the problem with fuel is taxation. They promised to look into taxation. Now this afternoon in broad daylight, they are telling us to increase taxes on fuel. What a paradox it is. Let us agree on this one, we must remove VAT on fuel otherwise there will be a revolution in this country if this one passes,” he added.
Minority Leader Opiyo Wandayi termed any attempt to increase fuel prices as the saddest day in Kenya’s history.
“If this clause becomes part of the Bill and VAT on fuel is increased to 16 % this will be the saddest day in the history of this country. If there is one thing that is going to affect the common person, increase the cost of living in all aspects it is this proposed increment on VAT on fuel,” said Wandayi.
“If there is one thing this government should have done to the so-called hustler was to cushion the hustler from an increment in the cost of fuel.”
Githunguri MP Gathoni Wamuchomba despite being elected under the ruling UDA Party, said she would not support any legislation that would burden Kenyans.
“Life is unbearable as we speak to our citizens. We cannot afford to add more levy on fuel because fuel is a catalyst for everything from production to marketing and to the welfare of our people. Right now, our people are suffering and production, especially in our rural areas, is going to go to zero if we add tax on fuel,” said Wamuchomba.
“If you want to revamp the economy of this country adding tax on fuel is not the solution. The solution is empowering our farmers who produce crops that bring donors to this country,” she added.