In a continued onslaught on former President Uhuru Kenyatta’s regime, President William Ruto on Sunday, January 14, shared an excerpt from an old Standard newspaper to explain the current cash crunch facing Kenya.
The President in a post shared a comparison between the rate of tax collections to GDP in the reign of Kenya’s third President and that of President Uhuru.
As per the excerpt, the rate of tax collection to GDP under President Kibaki remained above 20% for five years in the period between 2007 and 2012.
The rate of tax to GDP in 2007, the illustrations shows was 22% in 2007 and even rose to the high of 23.9% in 2008 and 23.6 in in 2010.
However, according to the Standard excerpt, the rate took a different trajectory in 2016- with graphics showing that the ratio spiraled downwards to a region of 16%.
According to the President, the drop in the rate of tax collected to the country’s GDP was the cause of the financial constraints experienced in the country.
“This is where the problem lies!” President affirmed while quoting the excerpt.
But his assertion was met with criticism from some users who were quick to point out his role as the then Deputy President in the period when the tax to GDP was on a downwards spiral.
Ruto Sparks Reactions with Sunday Post
Among those who commented was columnist and blogger Gabriel Oguda who termed his attacks on the Uhuru regime as an embarrassment.
“You were the Deputy President. Stop embarrassing yourself,” Gabriel Oguda noted while reacting to the Sunday morning post.
On her part, former running mate in the 2022 Presidential election Justina Wamae questioned Ruto’s continued praise for Kibaki despite having led the frontline in opposing his re-election bid in 2007.
On his part, Edgar Wabwire, an X user said, “You were the Deputy President. What are you telling us? What are you trying to justify?”
Also Read: Ruto is Not Overtaxing Kenyans: Mudavadi
The post went on to garner more than 700 comments within the first 30 minutes.
Ruto’s Insistence on Tax Efficiency
Since ascending to power in 2022, the President has been vocal on his government’s resolve to ensure efficiency in tax collection in a bid to achieve financial independence and save the country from overreliance on debt.
As part of his resolve, the President has introduced new policies and changes meant to ensure transparency in the tax collection systems.
Of concern, however, has been his sustained insistence that some of the challenges facing his administration stem from the decisions and inefficiencies of the former regime.