Second fuel levy protest fails as Kenyans protest on social media


Nairobi, KENYA: A boycott called for by the Motorists Association of Kenya starting on Monday through Wednesday to protest the surging prices of fuel failed to materialize a second time.

A spot check by Baraka FM in Mombasa and Nairobi revealed busy roads, a  sharp contrast to what the Motorists Association of Kenya called for on Sunday.

However, the fares had surged in some of the areas.

Benjamin Wanyonyi who hails from Magongo area of Mombasa said he was forced to pay sh 70 much higher than the ordinary sh 50 he pays.

Another spot check revealed that public service vehicles operating along the Ferry-Docks and Mtwapa –Mombasa routes had also hiked their fares.

However, a majority of disgruntled Kenyans took to social media to protest the implementation of the fuel levy despite a decision by parliament to suspend the implementation.

“Honestly this sudden increase in tax is demoralizing students especially those almost done with studying I mean how do you literally work for the government saving is really hard” read a tweet by Twitter user @_Hiram_254.

“By the expression of a large percentage of leaders they’re condemning vat on fuel then I wonder who is this that passed the decision to implement the 16% could it be the pres & CS alone or the MPs are just flattering us against their own decision” read a  tweet by another user @orutwasam.

Meanwhile, the Non-Governmental Organization Council has called upon president Uhuru Kenyatta to assent into law the recent amendment bill by parliamentarians that seeks to postpone the implementation of 16 percent tax on fuel products for two years.

The NGO through their chairman, Stephen Cheboi,  the council appealed to the government to reconsider the decision and find other avenues of raising taxes rather than effecting what will make lives of many citizens hard.

“The move to affect the current 16 % vat taxes increase will impact negatively on the lives of Kenyans and make lives harder to many. We call on the president to assent to the recent amendment bill by parliamentarians on the same,” Said Chemboi.

On Wednesday, Members of Parliament unanimously voted to pass the amendments by minority whip Junet Muhammed to have the petroleum tax postponed by two years.

The move by Treasury Cabinet secretary Henry Rotich to implement the 16 % VAT law on fuel taxation,  has seen Mps threaten to impeach him over defying parliament on new taxes.

Additional reporting by Janet Murikira and Rosette Abdalla