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Kenyans Gang Up Against Housing Fund Levy, Rage Online War

Housing Levy
[PHOTO/ COURTESY]

Kenyans today raged an online war against the 1.5 percent housing fund levy that the government intents to implement by the end of this month.

On Twitter, they used the hashtag #ResistHousingFundLevy to express their anger against the levy.

This comes at a time the labour court has suspended the implementation of the law, which is pegged on the controversial Finance Act of 2018.

The court said that the tax will stay on hold until the matter is heard on May 20 in a case filed by the Consumers Federation of Kenya (COFEK).

“The Housing Fund Levy will compel employees in private and public sector to invest in housing which may not be a priority to their individual needs thus infringing their constitutional right of utilizing their earning according to their earning according to their wishes,” court papers read.

COFEK said that the levy is not a priority as the country has more pressing matters including drought, rising cost of living and health challenges to deal with.

“The Housing Fund Levy is irrational because it does not factor the fact that some employees in private and public sector enjoy reasonable housing allowances and are members of home ownership schemes as part of their employment,’’ added COFEK.

The petition by COFEK was given a boost by the Federation of Kenya Employers (FKE) who headed to curt to ensure that the law is not implemented. Its implementation will see employers part with 1.5 percent for all employees, making it a total of 3 percent for every employee.

In a statement, FKE said that court orders suspending the implementation of the levy is still on, up to the May 20, 2019 when the case will come up again for mention.

Read: Employers’ Federation Fights Off Implementation Of Government’s Housing Fund Levy

“The Federation of Kenya Employers (FKE) attended Court on April 8, 2019 for the further mention of this case and obtained an extension of the Court Orders suspending the implementation of the Housing Levy up to the 20th of May 2019 when the case will come up again for mention for further directions from the Court on the Hearing and determination of this case,” the statement reads in part.

Here are some reactions from Kenyans on Twitter:-

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Francis Muli

Written by Francis Muli

Senior reporter at Kahawa Tungu, Muli has a passion for human interest stories. He believes in unearthing societal rots that have been hidden from the public eye. He has also carved himself a niche in writing business stories. He has worked for various organisations including Kenya Television Service, Business Today among others. Follow him on Twitter @FmuliKE.

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