Francis Atwoli, Central Organization of Trade Unions (COTU) Secretary General, is making a fervent appeal to Members of Parliament (MPs) to stand with the hardworking citizens.
He’s urging them to reject a bill that threatens to burden both employers and employees with heavier tax loads.
At a poignant moment during a funeral in Kakamega, Atwoli pointed out the challenges faced by Kenyan taxpayers.
The recent imposition of the housing fund levy already hit them hard, and further slashes in their salaries would only worsen their struggles.
Addressing the government directly, Atwoli emphasized the need to explore alternative revenue sources rather than relentlessly taxing employees who are already grappling with reduced incomes due to recent deductions.
He urged a focus on stimulating economic growth through manufacturing and expanding the export business.
In a plea directed at a specific individual, Atwoli urged restraint: “I urge my friend Shinali to abandon the employment levy discussions because people’s payslips are already heavily taxed.
If we haven’t achieved economic viability as a country… We cannot burden our workers with additional taxes.”
The proposed bill recommends a 1% contribution from employees matched by employers to fund unemployment benefits.
While the intention is to assist the unemployed, Atwoli’s concern lies in the financial strain this would put on the average Kenyan.
The timing couldn’t be worse, as basic commodity prices have already soared, making every coin in the pocket matter even more.
In this pivotal moment, Atwoli’s plea echoes the sentiments of countless hardworking citizens across Kenya.
It’s a call for fairness and empathy, urging those in power to consider the real-life implications of their decisions on the everyday lives of the people they represent.
The hope is for a just and compassionate resolution that eases the burden on the shoulders of the nation’s toiling workforce.