Last evening, President Kenyatta turned down the Finance Bill 2018 which would have resulted in the postponement of the 16 per cent VAT on petroleum products to 2020. The tax has caused a nationwide outcry as Kenyans grapple with a higher cost of living thanks to increased fuel and transport prices.
Kenyans have been expecting the President to sign the Bill into law, relieving them of the pressure caused by the fuel levy since it came into effect on 1 September 2018.
Intentional Delay to Sign the Bill
President’s Kenyatta’s action puts to rest the accusations that the National Assembly’s Speaker Justin Muturi was intentionally sitting on the Bill instead of forwarding it to the President for signing.
The law requires the President assent to a Bill within 14 days of its receipt or return it to the National assembly “with a memorandum failing which it automatically becomes law.”
Parliament will convene for a special meeting on Tuesday and Thursday next week to discuss the new development.
“The special sittings of the Assembly shall deal with the message of the president in respect of his reservations to the Finance Bill, 2018,” the Speaker said in a notice.
During the sittings, Parliament will also discuss Supplementary estimates 2018 and the readings of the Supplementary Appropriations Bill 2018.
President Kenyatta is expected to make a national address today regarding his decision.