Members of County Assembly (MCAs) were in for a rude shock after learning that the Kenya Revenue Authority is eyeing their car grant offered by President Uhuru Kenyatta.
KRA is seeking 30% of the Ksh2 million loan facility that was transformed into a grant, leaving the MCAs with Ksh 1.4 million each.
MCAs are now appealing to President Kenyatta to intervene, arguing that the money will not be adequate to purchase vehicles of their choice.President Uhuru Kenyatta at a meeting with Mt Kenya region MCAs at Sagana State Lodge on January 29, 2020.
KRA could raise nearly Ksh1.4 billion from the MCAs if a waiver is not granted on the inducement expected to cost taxpayers Ksh 4.5 billion.
"We're talking about getting about Ksh 1.4 million and not the Ksh 2 million hyped when President Kenyatta offered us the grant. We're shocked that the grant will be taxed," Lamu/Mkomani MCA Yahya Ahmed Shee said.
He added that the tax would end up demotivating the county legislators but expressed hope that the Building Bridges Initiative’s (BBI) Constitutional Amendment Bill would sail through.
"We're not opposing the BBI; we shall approve the Bill in our Lamu County assembly, " he assured.
KRA is looking to settle the matter in consultation with the Council of Governors over the nature of the grant.
" We've commenced discussions through the Council of Governors to understand the nature of the grant before we make a decision on the same, " KRA Commissioner General James Mburu told the media.
Despite the green light by the Salaries and Remuneration Commission, some members of the current crop of MCAs are likely to miss out on the car grant.
According to the County Government Act, 2012 only those who will be reelected in the 2022 General Election are eligible for the benefits.
“A county assembly legislation that confers a direct benefit whether financial or in-kind on members of the county assembly shall come into force after the next general election of members of the county assembly,” reads Article 25 (3) of the County Government Act, 2012.KRA Boss James Githii Mburu speaks at a conference in 2019
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