Court extends orders suspending 1.5% housing levy

Court extends orders suspending 1.5% housing levy

The High Court in Nairobi has extended orders barring the government from implementing the 1.5% housing levy until May 27, 2019.

Justice Maureen Onyango issued the orders on Monday morning to allow for the consolidation of the various cases filed against a plan by government to deduct a 1.5% levy from employees salaries for the creation of a housing fund.

Various parties including the Central Organization of Trade Union (COTU), Trade Union Congress of Kenya, Consumers Federation of Kenya (COFEK) and the Federation of Kenyan Employers (FKE) have filed suits challenging the levy.

The government had in April issued a public notice directing employer to deduct and remit the levy by the 9th of every succeeding month.

“The Housing Fund shall be used to finance the Affordable Housing Scheme under the Big 4 Agenda,” the notice reads.

President Uhuru Kenyatta unveiled the Big 4 Agenda two years ago saying his government would put up half a million low-cost houses.