Labour CS cautions against taxing pensioners

Thursday, June 11th, 2020 00:00 |
Labour and social protection Cabinet Secretary Simon Chelugui.

Bernard Gitau @benagitau

Labour and social protection Cabinet Secretary Simon Chelugui has urged Treasury to reconsider the proposed introduction of tax on pension saying it will be a financial burden on senior citizens.

Speaking yesterday when he released the National Street Families Census, the CS said he has received numerous petitions against the move, which will water down the Inua Jamii programme.

The proposal is among a raft of taxation measures contained in 2020/21 financial year Budget set to be read by Treasury Cabinet Secretary Ukur Yatani in Parliament today.

Financial muscle 

However, Chelugui said his ministry had engaged Treasury on the proposal that is likely to undermine efforts to financially empower pensioners and elderly.

“We are engaging Treasury to sustain the income of senior citizens. By taxing them, we are going to expose them to financial burden hence high cost of living,” he said.

He said his ministry had received and forwarded petitions to Treasury, adding that he optimistic that they will be considered.

Chelugui said his ministry under Inua Jamii Programme supports unemployed senior citizens aged 70 and above but those who receive pension deserves regular cash flow.

“Currently, under Inua Jamii, 700,093 senior citizens are benefitting and in the next financial year, we are increasing the number to 828,000,” he added. He lauded the programme saying it has raised the life expectancy. 

“Before the start of the programme, men’s life expectancy stood at 49 years and women at 51, but it has increased to 54 and 55 respectively,” he said.

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