boda boda operators PHOTO:COURTESY
Traders have begun enjoying the benefits of the Finance Act that proposed zero charges on their operations.
The move by Governor Kinuthia Mbugua, which is aimed at easing the cost of doing business, will benefit public transport providers such as boda boda operators, matatus and tuk tuks (tricycle).
Implementation of the new revenue streams has also seen a reduction of between 9 per cent and 33 per cent of other transport businesses monthly.
“We have also effected the changes in other sectors such as the entertainment industry where annual liquor permits, which have a percentage deviation of between 15 per cent and 25 per cent,” said James Mungai, a senior finance official in the department of finance and economic planning.
Hawkers too will enjoy a one-year ‘tax-holiday’ following the new charges, which have gone down from Sh1, 100 per month to Sh700.
“We have provided all traders with new markets in all our sub-counties. With these new rates, I’m sure most businesses will thrive,” Mr Mbugua said.
But his critics have dismissed the move as a campaign strategy to hoodwink voters as the country goes to the polls in the next few months.
“It is good for business people to enjoy the tax relief but the timing is definitely suspect, coming only five months to the August 8 elections,” said former National and Transport and Safety Authority (NTSA) boss Lee Kinyanjui, who has declared intention to unseat the governor.
Other beneficiaries of the new law are food handlers whose six months licence fees were reduced from Sh600 to Sh300 for those operating in Nakuru East, Nakuru West, Naivasha, Molo, Njoro, Gilgil, Bahati and Rongai sub-counties.
However, those operating in Subukia and Kuresoi North and South, respectively, will pay Sh250 instead of Sh500 charged in the last financial year.