LIVE BLOG: What Kenyans Expect From 2022/2023 National Budget

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    Treasury CS Ukur Yatani (right) poses for a photo at Treasury Headquarters, Nairobi on Thursday, June 11, 2020, ahead of Budget 2020/21 presentation
  • Treasury Cabinet Secretary, Ukur Yatani, is set to read the Ksh3.3 trillion 2022/2023 budget at the National Assembly.

    Kenyans are waiting with bated breath to see what the government has budgeted for even as the cost of basic commodities such as cooking oil, milk and maize meals going up in the recent past.

    The Thursday, April 7, 2:30 p.m. budget will be the country's largest-ever and President Uhuru Kenyatta's last as the Head of State. Kenyans have voiced their expectations even as the country finds a way of getting out of the worst ever an economic situation that has seen inflation rates go past the 5.4 percentage mark in the month of March.

    A majority of Kenyans who spoke to the press expressed optimism that the government will move in to stabilise the high cost of living by reducing the prices of basic commodities.

    Treasury officials during a meeting in Nairobi ahead of the National Budget reading
    Treasury officials during a meeting in Nairobi ahead of the National Budget reading.

    "It is just a shock that every year we normally have budgets being read here in Kenya and we are not seeing any change. If you go to supermarkets, you will find food prices are very high and there is just a blame game.

    "Right now, the government is saying that things are high because of the Russia - Ukraine fighting but it is not the same. The government should have mercy on us," lamented Victor Omondi Ogembe, a Kisumu County resident.

    Traders are also expecting the cost of doing business, which is highly affected by fuel prices, to go down even as they try to recover from the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic that has ravaged the country for over two years.

    Individuals are also waiting to see how the budget will solve the escalating national debt which has risen to unprecedented levels. For now, Ksh6 of every Ksh10 collected from the taxpayer goes towards paying for the debt. will keep you update on a minute-by-minute basis as the day unfolds. Keep refreshing this page for updates.

    5:00 p.m.: CS Ukur Yatani proposes the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) name change to Kenya Revenue Service (KRS) to boost its image.

    4:53 p.m.: "In order to scale up our fight against corruption, I propose an allocation of Ksh3.6 billion for the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC), Ksh3.4 billion for the Office of the Director of Public Prosecution (ODPP), Ksh8.4 billion for Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) and Ksh6.4 billion for the office of the Auditor-General," Yatani stated

    4:38 p.m.: Ksh544.4 billion has been allocated to the education sector with Ksh12 billion directed to Free Primary Education program, Ksh64.4 billion for the free Day Secondary School Education program, Ksh5 billion was allocated for the examination fee waiver while Ksh1.2 billion will be used in the training of teachers.

    4:20 p.m.: CS Ukur Yatani proposes an amendment to Insurance Act to compel boda boda riders to take covers for their passengers.

    4:13 p.m.: Out of the Ksh146.8B allocated to the healthcare sector, Ksh62.3 billion moves to Universal Health Coverage (UHC). Ksh7 billion to cater to Covid-19 vaccine, Ksh4.1 billion for free maternity, Ksh5.2 b for maintenance of equipment and Ksh1.8 billion for medical cover for the elderly.

    3:56 p.m.: Yatani proposed the introduction of Value Added Tax (VAT) exemptions to boost the growth of local medical industry.

    "In order to promote local manufacturing of pharmaceutical products, I propose to introduce VAT exemption on inputs used in the manufacture of medical ventilators and breathing appliances," he stated.

    3:45 p.m.: "The price of fertiliser has more than doubled; to safeguard food security, the govt has allocated KSh 3B to subsidise farmers during the current planting season. We propose another KSh 2.7B in the FY 2022/23," stated Yatani while confirming that in preparing the budget, the Treasury consulted Kenyans extensively.

    3:37 p.m.: Yattani revealed that under President Uhuru Kenyatta, the number of Primary schools increased from 26,000 to over 32,000 while 5.3 million title deeds were issued in three years.

    "Kenya has moved from a low income to middle-income country, income has increased 92.1% to Sh244,000 in 2021 from Sh127,000 in 2013.

    "In the health sector hospital bed capacity increased from 56,069 in 2013 to 82,291 in 2020. Construction-free maternity wards dubbed Linda Mama led to a decline in maternal deaths," he stated Yattani 

    3:25 p.m.: CS Ukur Yatani opened the reading by announcing that this year's event is themed 'Accelerating economic recovery for improved livelihoods.'

    "Overall, the economy is believed to have expanded by 7.6 per cent in 2021. In 2022, the economy is projected to stabilise at 6 per cent supported by the recovery in Agriculture, Industry and service sectors," he noted.

    3:09 p.m.: Former Prime Minister Raila Odinga arrives at the Parliament buildings for the 2022/2023 budget reading.

    2:47 p.m.: Garissa Town MP Aden Duale has vowed to walk out of Parliament during budget reading arguing that the entire exercise is illegal and unconstitutional.

    He argues that, as per the Constitution, the CS was expected to take the budget policy statement two months before the reading for Parliament to interrogate before the budget is approved.

    "What the Minister is doing this afternoon is illegal and has never been done by any other Minister of Finance. The budget-making process is a function of the National Assembly and that is what the Kenyan people said in the Kenyan Constitution. The process is not an event, it is a sequence.

    "There was a court ruling last year that says the Minister cannot table the estimates until the Division of the Revenue Bill is assented to, that was done yesterday. The Minister has not tabled the estimate yet," stated Duale

    2:31 p.m.: National Assembly Speaker Justin Muturi declared that MPs have the right to increase or decrease taxes as per the recommendations from CS Ukur Yatani that will be presented within the 2022/23 National Budget.

    He also urged the lawmakers to use the highly skilled resources at the Parliament building in dealing with the increasing national debt.

    "MPs are the ones who do the appropriations. When it comes to taxation, it is up to the MPs to look through them and see which taxes they can lower and which can be introduced. They take the views from the Treasury CS.

    "Kenyans should know that if they are concerned about the high level of taxation, the blame should lie on MPs. We have highly trained manpower which helps the committees (in dealing with the debt crisis)," he noted in an interview.

    2:00 p.m.: CS Ukur Yatani promises that the budget will address the recent increase in fuel and basic commodity prices as he leaves the Treasury for Parliament. He will also highlight President Uhuru Kenyatta's successes since he assumed office.

    "We believe that we have done our best and we present to Kenyans the best that we can find and in the circumstances that we are in now.

    "We have taken care of the challenges of the time including how to deal with fuel and food insecurity... I don't think anything essential that is going to worry Kenyans will go up. If there is going to be a modest increase in price, maybe it is not for essential goods," he stated.

    1:35 p.m.: Emuhaya MP Omboko Milemba expects that the budget will have a generous allocation to aid the Competency-Based Curriculum (CBC) transition.

    "This budget should focus on Education and the fact that we have Competency Based Curriculum (CBC) supposed to gain momentum to the next stages. I expect good money has been allocated not just to the infrastructure but also for the employment of teachers," he stated.

    12:45 p.m.: A man was arrested protesting the high cost of living outside the Treasury building by plain-clothed officers. 

    "I am ready to die for freedom, I am ready to die for my people. I am ready to die for justice. We want food, we are hungry," chanted the protester as he was bundled into a waiting police truck.

    12:03pm: Security was beefed outside the National Treasury building in Nairobi CBD as CS Ukur Yatani is expected to head to Parliament for the briefing. The two buildings are 1km apart.

    "Unlike previous years, the 2022/23 Budget Statement is being presented to the National Assembly two months before the end of the 2021/22 Financial Year to accommodate the elections scheduled for August 9, 2022," explained the Ministry.

    9:40am: Officials from the Ministry of Treasury convened for the final preparations meeting before CS Ukur Yattani presents the budget to Parliament.

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