Nairobi — President-elect William Ruto has directed the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) not to close any business due to tax non-compliance but rather, resolve the disputes amicably with affected parties.
Speaking at an interdenominational thanksgiving service at Maua Stadium in Meru County on Sunday, Ruto noted that even though the taxes collected help in fostering the country’s economy, the tax man cannot use forceful means and even going to the extent of destroying and closing businesses to get the taxes.
He noted that he had an engagement with KRA and directed that they stop using force and other means to collect levies but talk to Kenyans with respect, so they pay their taxes.
“We have already agreed with them that they will have decorum and respect and we will plan together with them so that every Kenyan pays their tax, and I will be on the front line to pay my taxes so that the rest may follow my lead,” he said.
The President-elect further noted that the country has a good opportunity to revive the ailing state of its economy if the large appetite for borrowing is dealt with and businesses become compliant in paying their taxes.
“We have an opportunity to revive our economy. That opportunity is for us to stop borrowing money, and we must stop it. But for us to stop it, all of us who own a business must pay our taxes for us to have funds to run our nation,” he added.
With the Kenya Kwanza government’s move to support small businesses financially, Ruto urged those who will benefit from the ‘Hustlers Fund’ to remember to pay taxes so that they may be in a position to run their businesses well in the financial year that will follow.
His sentiments come days after KRA moved to court accusing Keroche Breweries of failing to honour tax payment agreements which informed the reopening of the Naivasha-based brewer in July.
According to the taxman, after the reopening of Keroche Breweries on July 29, the brewer declined to make good the payments as directed by the court.
KRA stated that Keroche was to pay Sh8million on August 6, Sh8million on August 30 and the current taxes worth Sh14.2million but the brewer failed to comply.
Keroche Breweries and KRA have been engaged in a tax impasse since May which has seen both parties move in and out of court after the taxman shut the factory.