MP Kuria Kimani

The Finance and Planning Committee of the National Assembly is working quickly to finish its report before Tuesday when the Finance Bill 2023 will be introduced in Parliament.

Due to the intense pressure that the panel is under, MP Kuria Kimani, the chairman of the parliamentary financial watchdog, has suggested that the bill's introduction may be postponed until Wednesday.

"This will be the biggest report ever presented in Parliament, and we will contain the comments of every Kenyan who talked with us. The Molo Constituency MP predicted that it would be 1,000 pages long since it would include the opinions of all Kenyans.

"But we can't support every bill; God will give us the knowledge we need to choose wisely. We shall not take Kenyans' opinions for granted. Every clause in the 157 texts is important.

The lawmaker denied statements made by confident leaders of the opposition Azimio la Umoja One Kenya coalition that the Finance Bill 2023, which had been largely altered by the committee before being presented in Parliament, would be approved in its current form.

"Azimio is erroneous. Instead of being approved as a whole, the bill will be passed section by section. When the bill is introduced, people may propose amendments if they have better ones. Therefore, the bill as a whole cannot pass.

"The public is being misled by them. Aside from the sections that are being debated, there is a tonne of other clauses that Kenyans favour, "according to Kimani.

The National Assembly's Finance and Planning Committee is carefully balancing the need to generate revenue for the government in the upcoming Thursday budget reading for the fiscal year 2023-2024 while also taking into account the challenging economic conditions brought on by the high cost of living.

"This bill has received the greatest discussion in Kenyan history; it seems like a vote is being held. We are trying to increase tax income without borrowing to broaden the tax base, but we are doing so while keeping in mind the cost of living," the committee chairman stated.

A technical team made up of representatives from the National Treasury, the Kenya Revenue Authority, and the Office of the Attorney General supports the parliamentary watchdog that is drafting the report on the Finance Bill.

The AG is making sure that every provision in the bill is compliant with the law.

The committee must realise its Ksh. According to the National Treasury, 2.5 trillion in income for the fiscal year 2023-2024

The Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) is offering substitute tax options for the amendment-affected provisions.

"We are reading through hundreds of papers, paragraph by paragraph," Kimani said we will table the Finance Bill on Tuesday and go on to the second reading and another committee of the full House if House business is approved by the end of the following week.


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