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Standoff As Petroleum CS John Munyes Opposes 16% VAT Levy On Fuel

CS John Munyes
CS John Munyes

The debate on the 16% VAT levy on fuel has taken another twist, after Petroleum and Mining Cabinet Secretary John Munyes called for the suspension of the same, leaving his counterpart in the National Treasury Henry Rotich almost alone.

The news were shared by national broadcaster KBC.

Munyes is instead calling for wider consultations between Treasury and Industry players claiming that the levy has negatively affected the petroleum industry.

Most government officials including the President have remained silent about the issue since the levy was implemented by the Ministry of Finance on September 1.

The Deputy President William Ruto only promised that the government will look into it, killing the hopes of many Kenyans as the ghost of raised living cost stares.

Yesterday top officials of the executive met parliament officials in a bid to find a solution to the issue. Speaking to journalists after the meeting with Treasury CS Henry Rotich, Attorney General Paul Kihara and other top members of the Executive, Speaker Justin Muturi said he is optimistic a solution will be found but he did not give timelines.

Read: Justice Chacha Mwita Declines To Give Orders Stopping 16% VAT Tax On Fuel

The levy has seen numerous battles in court, in parliament and in governments offices as Rotich holds into his position determined to fund a budget experts have termed as overambitious.

Yesterday, Bungoma High Court issued temporary orders suspending the levy awaiting the President’s decision on a bill passed by Parliament postponing the levy for two years. Rotich however snubbed the order, and the levy is still being implemented. The President is in Rwanda for official duties.

A High Court in Nairobi also refused to quash the implementation of the VAT on fuel, awaiting the President’s decision.

Since the implementation, fuel transporters have been on go slow as their public transport operators hike fares. Most parts of the country have been smitten by inadequate fuel, with long lines being experienced in petro stations with the now rare commodity.

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Written by Francis Muli

Follow me on Twitter @francismuli_. Email francis@kahawatungu.com

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