A fool and his money are soon parted
and I contend here, we are country of fools and for this reason we will soon, each one of us will have to part with money, albeit not through treachery but as a result of actions some of us took a few months ago. During the run up to the plebiscite in March of this year, I did write a few posts, which, just like this one was read by few Kenyans where I told them for the love of the country let us be wise. For most people, then and now, it has been a question of us vs them, mainly antagonism between the Luos and the Kikuyus. I said then and I reiterate, when prices of commodities go up, they will not segregate and have a Luo or Kikuyu price, it will apply across the board both for the poor, middle class and rich alike. And until that day that we will wake up to the realization that it is a struggle between a few thieves, yes I call them thieves and the masses, we will continue to grow poor and poorer and the dream of industrialization will remain just that, a dream never to be reached.
The government has recently adopted a VAT bill[pdf], that was passed by our useless parliament which among its strengths is that it creates a less complex terrain for VAT compliance and determination starting with the reduction in the number of exempt goods and services from 3,000 to less than 50. Whereas this is laudable, the net effect of this bill is to widen the tax base in effect increasing tax. The government is broke, very broke and it is huge, thanks to the drafters of our new constitution. It beats me why a country of 30 million should have 300 plus members of parliament without counting members of the senate and county assemblies, superfluous principal secretaries, several standing constitutional commissions that do nothing towards developing the economy but contribute to increasing our tax burden.
The reactions to the increased tax have been nothing but interesting. They show the level of discontent with the government and I hope it is only a matter of time before we go the Egyptian way. Am skeptical that we can rise up above our ethnic groups to say no as a nation to the political class. We are a nation of fools, that it would take help from the Olympian gods to even open just a few eyes. Everything is looked at through the prism of our person regardless of whether the person in question has swindled the public of funds. This apathy, exhibited especially so, by those Kenyans on Twitter[#KOT], a group one would think represents the middle class and the educated mass of this country is far from depressing.
What I find interesting is that the deep political undertones are not far away as can be seen in the tweets below.
And even though there is displeasure with the bill, KOT have a few items they feel should be taxed more
Before I end this post, I can almost predict that crime will go up. The police or the NSIS can take this information to the bank. There has been no significant increase in the earnings for a majority of Kenyans, unemployment is at very high levels, the value of the local currency compared to international currencies is doing weak, we are a net importer of goods and as a result, the cost of living is going beyond the roof, that is if there is still a roof while the standard of life is taking a dive head first. This situation, which, as it appears to me the government seems to ignore or pretend doesn’t exist is recipe for chaos and civil unrest.
And that friends is where I stop with this update on motherland. I will let you know if and when we decide to say no to this greed but I hope we shall not have starved or internet will have become so expensive to keep blogging.