Kenya: Public Outrage Over Newly-Introduced Housing Tax

Activist Okiya Omtatah at Milimani Law Court.
20 September 2018

The newly-introduced housing levy that will have Kenyans being deducted 1.5 percent from their monthly salaries to help finance a new low cost house funding has angered Kenyans on Twitter.

The initial bill proposed by the National Treasury was at 0.5 per cent of the gross pay per month matched by employers, but this was rejected by MPs last month.

However President Uhuru Kenyatta reinstated the levy raising it even higher to 1.5 percent.

"An employer shall pay to the National Housing Development Fund... 1.5 per cent of the monthly basic salary," said Mr Kenyatta in a memo to MPs.

This has aroused hostility and anger from Kenyans on Twitter who bashed the government for causing more pain to the common mwananchi.


@MegyTvT tweeted, "The worst CS today!! So you punish high earners to build houses for WHO?"

@Rose27868032 asked, "Who cursed this nation surely?"

@ratmosh said, "We have given these thieves a pass on virtually everything and we have normalized this actions."

@tituskimanthi wrote, "The only thing that will stop this greed by our government is a revolution."

@cyberplutonium commented, "Honestly the government has no business building houses for its citizens. Reduce the price of the materials cement, steel, mabati, nails and Kenyans will build their own houses."

@Kunj_Shah said, "On top of PAYE, NSSF, NHIF, VAT on everything, withholding tax on bank and money transfers... Why don't you just take all our money so that all the thieves in govt can steal it?"

@EdwinOdhiambo said, "I struggle housing myself with that amount, how I'm I expected to "house" others? Afadhali Yesu arudi hii dunia ifungwe."

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