Put citizens’ welfare at centre of fiscal policy


Tax concept, high angle view of businessman crushed by the huge stone on the street. PHOTO | SHUTTERSTOCK

In 2023, Kenyans have weathered tough economic conditions caused by both local and external shocks.

Higher taxes, a weaker currency and elevated inflation due to rising food and fuel costs are just some of the issues they have had to contend with, making the fact that the economy has still managed to grow by over five percent all the more impressive. Looking ahead into 2024, many will be concerned about the possibility of a repeat of the same hiccups that characterised the past year.

It doesn’t have to be like that though if there is concerted effort to put the welfare of the citizen at the centre of government’s fiscal policy.

This means prioritising expenditure on sectors that can create jobs, and cutting the wanton wastage of public resources that is now being partly covered through the drive for more taxes.

If the government is to meet its often-stated desire to put more money in people’s pockets, it must take a firmer stance against grand corruption, as well as enforcement of the spending cuts that will also free the exchequer from having to borrow heavily and raise taxes.

These actions will require political nerve, and 2024 is the year for the government to show up.

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Note: The results are not exact but very close to the actual.