- 5 million new jobs for youth in the first three years
- A home for every family.
- Cost of cement to drop from Sh600 to Sh250
Machakos Governor Alfred Mutua has outlined lowering cost of food, internet, phone call charges and electricity as his priority if elected president in the forthcoming elections.
While launching his Presidential manifesto at Panafric hotel in Nairobi, Mutua said he will ensure the price of 2kg packet of maize flour is reduced by half.
“My government will ensure that every household is able to put food on the table. For example, the cost of maize flour (unga) will drop from Sh120 per 2kgs packet to less than 60 shillings,” he said.
The second term governor undertook to mop up food grains, meat including beef, fish, chicken alongside vegetables, oils and milk and store them so as to create enough stocks to last the county 3 years if it does not rain.
He also said he will create a special food fund to assist those without cash to purchase food.
“Starvation is not only brought about by lack of rain but lack of money. Countries with little to no rainfall like Saudi Arabia never need food relief. They have money to buy food,” he said.
The governor said his manifesto is derived from the many sessions of his listening tours across the country, just before COVID restrictions.
“I toured counties and instead of talking like other politicians, I cared and listened and took extensive notes of the voices of Wananchi,” he said.
“I am a product of the wanyonge in our country. I know what it means to sleep hungry and to toil with little rewards. I have seen and felt the frustrations of Kenyans and it is clear it is time we had leadership whose policies favored the sauti ya vijana na wanyonge,” he said.
On youth, Mutua promised to create 5 million new jobs for them in the first three years of his presidency.
The governor said this will be achieved through tax breaks of up to 5% for companies that hire 10 or more youth at entry level.
The hardest thing to be in Kenya right now is a young, mature person. Here you are with energy, dreams and expectations but you are in a country where whenever you step out of the door, everything seems to work against you.
He observed that entertainment industry will be made a major income producer and free music and video production centers in every county to grow talent.
Mutua said TV shows and music being played on TV and radios will have 80% of locally produced or in collaboration factoring emerging Kenyan artists.
He said he will remove duty and taxes on filming equipment, locations and crew for local and international productions.
“We have been losing millions as filmmakers relocate to South Africa and Nigeria because of Kenyan bureaucracy and unnecessary taxes,” he noted.
Mutua promised that all existing businesses owned by youth will have annual taxes reduced by 50% for three years. All new startup businesses by youth to have a tax waiver of 60% for 3 years, he added.
The governor further said his government will waive the requirements for a surety for the youth fund for individuals and partnerships for up to Sh500,000 loans.
“The loans will be pegged at an interest rate of 0.2% and will be disbursed as project/accounts/equipment funds,” said Mutua.
He also promised to harmonize County and National Government taxes to stop double taxation and reduce income tax from 30% to 20% and also reduce business taxes to 25%. “The idea is to broaden the tax base,” he added.
He further promised to reduce the duties paid on petrol and cars. “A one million shillings car in Europe or America is sold in Kenya at Sh3 million shillings, Sh500,000 being cost of shipping and profit and Sh 1.5 million as taxes. Cars are not only for the rich but can be made affordable for all of us,” said Mutua.
He said duty for imported vehicles will be pegged at a maximum 15% of the car’s original cost.
The governor added that he will ensure each family has a home. “Owning a decent home should not just be a preserve for a privileged few. The ongoing Affordable Housing Program, though well-meaning, is still out of reach for most Kenyans and does not factor in homes for majority of Kenyans who live in the rural areas,” he said.
A tax holiday will be provided for raw materials used in production of cement, paint, steel and other items used in house construction, he added.
On agriculture, Mutua said he will pursue ongoing cash crops reforms such as coffee, tea, sugar, cacadamia, and avocado and revive the growing of cotton, miraa, sunflowers, groundnuts, cashew nuts, rice, wheat, flowers among others.
“Special emphasis will be placed on production of beef, lamb, camel and goat meat for export,” he said.
He said his government will support the setting up of factories for local production of affordable fertilizers. Farming counties will be encouraged to set up a fertilizer production plant, he added.
On women development, Mutua said he will put in place policies to mainstream women table banking into the financial system and make it a national program fully supported by extension officers.