June 18, 2024

Ruto legal advisor warns KRA over controversial housing levy deductions

2 min read
Ruto legal advisor warns KRA over controversial housing levy deduction

AG Muturi warns KRA against controversial housing levy deductions over lack of a legal framework

AG Muturi warns KRA against controversial housing levy deductions over lack of a legal framework.

The controversial housing levy has drawn criticism from Attorney General Justin Muturi, who has advised the Kenya Revenue Authority against deductions in absence of a supporting legal framework.

The AG referred the taxman to the court of appeals’ January 26, 2024 opinion, which affirmed a high court ruling that deemed the Housing Levy unlawful, in a letter addressed to KRA Commissioner General Humphrey Wattanga.

A three-judge panel last year upheld high court petitions against section 84 of the Finance Act 2023 on the grounds that the tax was unfair and in clear violation of Kenya’s Article 10 constitution.

The finance bill 2023 was assented to by President William Ruto on June 26, 2023.

MPs on Wednesday last week passed 49 amendments captured in the Affordable Housing Bill, 2023 setting the stage for all Kenyans; both salaried and non-salaried, to contribute 1.5% of their income towards the Affordable Housing Fund.

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Early this month AG Muturi tasked the Parliament to make necessary amendments to the controversial Housing Bill that will benefit common citizens.

Muturi who spoke after appearing before the joint committees of Finance and Planning and Housing and Urban Planning, said the bill also concerns counties contrary to the majority leader Kimani Ichungwa’s assertion.

He assured the committee that all the issues that were raised by the courts in striking out the Housing Levy have been dealt with in the proposed bill, but challenged them to make the bill even better as they have the mandate to do so.

“We are of the view that this bill addresses all the three issues raised by the courts, but like I said these are just proposals and the House has the powers to make further amendments to make the bill even better,” he said.

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