Kenyans are bracing for harder economic times ahead after the government raided their pockets to fund its Sh3 trillion, about 30 billion dollars spending plan for the next 12 months.
This follows the unveiling of the 2018/2019 budget in Parliament on Thursday by the Treasury cabinet secretary Henry Rotich.
Unlike in the past, when budgets sought to secure social equity, the new tax proposals target essential commodities such as maize flour, milk, bread, petroleum products and medicine, and will, therefore, hit where it matters most.
The surprise increase in the mobile levy will see Kenyans pay a 12 per cent excise duty on money transfer services, up from 10 per cent.
The Budget is anchored on the platform of economic transformation and prioritises the government’s top four agenda — namely; universal healthcare, manufacturing, affordable housing and food security.
It is high on expenditures and minimal on revenues, coming against a backdrop of runaway corruption within the government.