Leaders of the One Kenya Unity coalition, known as Azimio la Umoja, have cautioned members of their coalition against supporting the 2024 Finance Bill, stating it would amount to betraying the citizens.

Opposition coalition MPs have pledged to block the bill, arguing that it would further burden Kenyans with new types of taxes.

Led by ODM Deputy Leader Wycliffe Oparanya, George Wajackoya, and DAP Kenya party leader Eugene Wamalwa, these leaders criticized the bill, stating that it would have negative effects on Kenyans who are already burdened by taxes under the Kenya Kwanza government.

Mr. Oparanya said that many children have been unable to return to school because their parents cannot afford school fees due to the high cost of living since the Kenya Kwanza government increased taxes.

“There will come a time when we will say ‘enough’ and refuse to let Kenyans continue to be oppressed by the Kenya Kwanza regime. Our Azimio MPs must stand firm and reject the Bill proposing punitive taxes on Kenyans,” said Mr. Oparanya.

He emphasized that they would closely monitor to see which opposition MPs would support the bill.

Mr. Wamalwa urged opposition MPs to fight for the rights of ordinary Kenyans and resist pressure from a government that aims to increase taxes.

“Kenyans have been suffering since 2023 when President Ruto introduced high taxes. They hope MPs will reject the 2024 Finance Bill. You must be brave and save the country from the cruel taxes imposed by the government,” he advised the MPs.

Mr. Wamalwa stated that the 2024 Finance Bill is even worse than the 2023 one.

MPs who attended the funeral of Agneta Nerima Wangwe, the mother of Navakholo MP Emmanuel Wangwe, at Sisokhe Primary School, promised to unite in blocking the Bill as they did when they passed a motion to impeach Agriculture Minister Mithika Linturi before he was saved by a special committee that investigated allegations against him.

Mumias East MP Peter Salasya said the government should explain the success of the 2023 Finance Bill, which introduced high taxes.

“Before the proposed 2024 Finance Bill is brought to Parliament, we want the Finance Minister to be summoned by Parliament to explain the total amount of money collected from the 2023 Finance Bill and how Kenyans have benefited before discussing the 2024 Finance Bill, which is a budget of Sh3.9 trillion,” said Mr. Salasya.

Vihiga Senator Godfrey Osotsi urged MPs to clear themselves by working with senators and stop being government puppets.

However, Kenya Kwanza MPs defended the bill, saying it is intended to bring development to the country. National Assembly Budget Committee Vice-Chair Mary Emase said projects such as good roads and school infrastructure require a lot of money and can be implemented by the government if it has enough funds.