Orange Democratic Movement leader Raila Odinga has taken on the Uhuru led government over what he terms as an unfavorable tax regime.
The former Prime Minister castigated the government for killing small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) through high taxation.
Odinga said the tax regime was killing small scale businesses which is disadvantageous to the growth of Kenya’s economy
Speaking on Friday, 18 June in Kiambu County, he noted that local businesses are overburdened with many being forced to close down resulting in job losses.
He further accused Uhuru government of allowing for Chinese importers to flourish in the country at the expense of Wanjiku.
Raila wondered why the Chinese businessmen were paying lower taxes for the goods they import.
“The only way the government can encourage local businesses to grow in the spirit of Buy Kenya, Build Kenya was by relaxing some of the regulations and demands by the taxpayer adding that this will motivate young entrepreneurs to do business locally,’” Raila said.
He urged the business community to reject tribalism and work to strengthen the country’s economy.
“Back in the day, we were at the same level with Singapore, Malaysia, and South Korea, today, close to six decades, these countries are wining and dining with the big brothers. Kenya is still struggling to catch up because of corruption and other vices” he added.
Former Nairobi deputy governor turned businessman Polycarp Igathe, said the time had come for Kenyans to embrace a business-oriented leadership, claiming that the country’s businessmen and women had suffered in the past.
“Next year going forward, we must mean business. For a long time, we have been talking politics and not business, it is time we changed for the better of our economy”, he said.
Igathe believes that if Kenyans elect leaders who care about business rather than politics from morning to evening, the country’s economy will flourish.
“I invited Hon. Raila Odinga to this event because I have known him not only as a politician, but also a businessman, and I believe if he works closely with the business community, he can mean business” said Igathe.