National Assembly petitioned to look into fuel price hike

National Assembly petitioned to look into fuel price hike

The National Assembly has been petitioned to look into the high prices of fuel by two Kenyans.

Speaker Justin Muturi received a petition from Antony Manyara and John Wangai calling for urgent repeal of Section 13 of the Finance Act, 2018 in order to address the sharp rise in prices of petroleum and petroleum products.

The petitioners decried section 13 of the Finance Act, 2018 which amended section 5(2) of the Value Added Tax, 2013 that introduced an 8% VAT on petroleum and petroleum products which had previously been tax exempt.

The two petitioners, who termed the review as draconian, cited the biting effects of the spike in fuel prices on taxpayers.

Following this, Speaker Muturi has given the National Assembly’s Finance Committee 14 days to look into the matter and report to the House, as provided for in the Constitution.

“Honourable members, you will agree with me that this is a current matter which is of great concern to the people. Indeed, in addition to this Petition as well as a similar Petition by the Member for Matungulu, the Hon. Stephen Mule Mutinda, MP, I have received requests for Adjournment Motions from the Member for Dagoretti North, Hon. Simba Arati, MP and Nominated Member, the Hon. Wilson Sossion, MP seeking adjournment of the House so as to deliberate on this very issue,” Muturi wrote to MPs.

“I have determined that the best avenue for resolving the issue at hand is not a Motion under Standing Order 33, but rather legislation, and it is on the same basis that I declined to approve Statements and Questions from several other Members on the matter.”

The Speaker further directed the Finance Committee to attach a draft Bill to its report proposing legislative interventions as sought by the petitioners for his approval for publication.

He added that the committee undertake targeted inquiry to confirm whether there exists other reasons, beyond taxation, leading to the drastic rise in the cost of petroleum and petroleum products with a view to proposing administrative and legislative measures for addressing them.

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