The government under President William Ruto could be considering going after the offshore accounts of the Kenyatta family to check for mandatory taxation. The hint was given by National Assembly Majority Leader Kimani Ichung’wah, who stated that the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) has the responsibility to ensure that any wealth kept abroad has undergone the proper taxation procedures. Ichung’wah has been clear in his message that any income made in Kenya must be taxed. The move to go after the offshore accounts comes after Ichung’wah wrote to the Treasury seeking information on tax reliefs, exemptions, or waivers granted since 2018.
This move is expected to spark political tensions in the country, particularly since the target appears to be the “Handshake brothers,” referring to the political alliance between President Uhuru Kenyatta and opposition leader Raila Odinga. Some people believe that this move is a clear indication of Ruto’s apparent purge on the Kenyatta and Moi families. The move is coming at a time when Raila has lined up anti-government protests, and many are worried that this will further exacerbate the tensions between the government and the opposition.
Ichung’wah’s letter to the Treasury, dated February 6th, requests information on tax reliefs, exemptions, or waivers granted to individuals, companies, firms, or institutions from 2018 to date. Additionally, the letter seeks information on tax incentives granted to firms or companies under contractual agreements entered into by the government for the implementation of various capital projects during the same period. The letter also requests the statutory basis for the waivers and a list of individuals, companies, firms, or institutions that were granted the tax relief, exemptions, or waivers.
In conclusion, the move to go after the Kenyatta family’s offshore accounts is a bold step by the government to ensure that all income made in Kenya is taxed. It remains to be seen what impact this will have on the political landscape of the country, particularly as Raila has lined up anti-government protests.