President Uhuru Kenyatta Increases Minimum Wage by 18%

President Uhuru Kenyatta has increased the minimum wage for workers by 18%.

In his address during the Labour Day celebrations at Uhuru Park grounds in Nairobi, the President further issued a directive to increase the non-taxable bonuses and overtime to Sh100,000 to cushion low-income earners.

The Central Organisation for Trade Unions (COTU) was expecting a 22% increase in the minimum taxable income which is currently at Sh13, 475.

President Kenyatta also directed Cabinet Secretary for Industrialisation, Adan Mohamed, to urgently convene a meeting with employers “to explore measures to cushion them from costs associated with non-labour factors.”

“I understand that you want to have more disposable income to be able to meet your families’ needs. I am aware the workers on the lower income bracket are struggling to afford basic necessities.  It is not fair that they should be taxed heavily,” said the President.

The President noted that Kenya has one of the best pools of skilled workers in the world and that is why many Kenyans have found employment overseas.

He said majority have positive experiences but there are those who have fallen into risky employment where their rights have been abused.

The Head of State emphasised that his Government had streamlined the registration and management of foreign employment agencies.

“I strongly urge every Kenyan going abroad, to use the approved agencies.  You should also make sure that you register at the Kenyan Embassy serving the foreign country you are in,” said President Kenyatta.

In mid-April, President Kenyatta had promised to impress workers on Labour Day by increasing the minimum wage.

Speaking during his tour of the United Aryan Company, a garment factory in the Baba Dogo Export Processing Zone (EPZ) in Nairobi, Kenyatta stated that better wages would motivate workers to produce quality products, which would ensure more customers.

“For the past two years, we have not increased salaries for private sector workers. We are now saying come Labour Day, we will impress on your employers to give you a salary increment,” he remarked.


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