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Kenyan MPs may lose assets over tax arrears

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Denzel Musumba

Denzel Musumba


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The Kenya Revenue Authority will auction the property of MPs and other top government officials if they don’t pay their taxes.Their bank accounts could also be seized and money recovered.The no-nonsense position taken by the taxman means that the tax-free existence that MPs have fought so hard to keep is almost coming to an end.MPs’ tax holiday, through which they pay income tax on only Sh200,000 of their Sh850,000 salaries, is hugely unpopular with the public.Other public officials who are joining the ranks of taxpayers include the Attorney General, judges, Controller and Auditor General, chairman and members of the Public Service Commission and Interim Independent Electoral Commission chairman and commissioners.The Constitution explicitly provides that no public official is to be exempted from paying taxes. From the moment it became law on August 27 last year, the incomes of constitutional office holders became taxable.KRA has given the affected officials, and their employers, until mid-July to pay up. If they don’t, enforcement measures will be taken to recover the money, warned Mr John Njiraini, the Commissioner for Domestic Taxes..