Editorials

Listen to Budget chief on emergency loans

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Controller of Budget Margaret Nyakang’o. FILE PHOTO | FRANCIS NDERITU | NMG

The proposal by the Controller of Budget that the Treasury clear all the emergency loans tapped from the Central Bank of Kenya by June 30 is yet another timely call that ought to go through if the galloping public debt were to be tamed.

According to the Controller of Budget, Margaret Nyakang’o, the overdrafts that are spent on priority payments when receipts such as tax revenues fall short should not be turned into the long-term public debt that has now ballooned past the critical Sh10 trillion by this month.

Even from the usual meaning of the word, ‘emergency’ loans offered by commercial banks and saccos are short-term loans whose repayment takes a shorter period compared to regular products. 

It, therefore, does not augur well for the Treasury to use such a window to unnecessarily burden the taxpayer.

We ask the concerned parliamentary committees and other institutions to review the proposal and ensure it sees the light of day as Kenya struggles with the appetite for debt that has seen the taxpayer saddled with all manner of taxes that are making the cost of living a nightmare