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Kenya Police, and Protesters Clash: 5 Things To Know #Politricks

Written by on June 26, 2024

Nairobi, Kenya (ReggaeVibeMedia.com) –  The current unrest in Kenya is driven by a deep frustration among the population, particularly the youth, over the new tax measures introduced by the Finance Bill 2024. The protesters’ message is clear and multifaceted:

  1. Economic Hardship and Inequity: The new taxes are seen as unfairly targeting the poor and middle class, exacerbating economic inequality and making it harder for ordinary Kenyans to make ends meet. Protesters argue that the taxes are designed to drive people into deeper poverty, benefiting only a small elite while the majority suffer. The high cost of living, coupled with rising inflation, has left many struggling to afford basic necessities​(The Star)​​ (Africanews)​.
  2. Government Accountability and Transparency: Demonstrators are calling for greater accountability and transparency from the government. They feel that their voices are not being heard and that the government is not acting in the best interests of its citizens. The opposition leader, Raila Odinga, has accused the government of using excessive force to suppress dissent and has called for investigations into police brutality during the protests​(Africanews)​.
  3. Opposition to Specific Tax Measures: Specific elements of the Finance Bill, such as increased VAT on essential goods, higher income taxes, and levies on fuel, have been particularly contentious. These measures are seen as placing an undue burden on the average Kenyan, making it even more difficult for them to survive economically​(The Star)​.
  4. Political Leadership and Electoral Integrity: There is also a broader political dimension to the protests. Many protesters are supporters of the opposition and are disillusioned with President William Ruto’s administration. They feel that the current leadership is not legitimate, with some still contesting the results of the 2022 presidential election. This political dissatisfaction is fueling the intensity of the protests​ (Africanews)​.
  5. Demand for Policy Reforms: Beyond just opposing the new taxes, protesters are demanding comprehensive policy reforms that address the root causes of economic hardship in Kenya. They want policies that promote economic growth, job creation, and social justice, rather than those that deepen poverty and inequality​ (The Star)​.

The protests have been marked by slogans and chants calling for the rejection of the Finance Bill and for better governance. Protesters have used social media to organize and amplify their message, ensuring that their grievances reach a wider audience both domestically and internationally. The ongoing unrest is a powerful indicator of the urgent need for the government to engage with its citizens and address their legitimate concerns.

The ongoing protests in Kenya have taken a dramatic turn with the involvement of notable figures, including Auma Obama, the half-sister of former U.S. President Barack Obama. During one of the demonstrations, Auma Obama was tear-gassed by police on live television, highlighting the intensity of the government’s crackdown on protestors. This incident has drawn significant attention, both locally and internationally, underscoring the widespread discontent and the lengths to which the authorities are going to suppress dissent​ (AOL.com)​​ (Capital News)​.

Auma Obama’s presence at the protests adds a prominent voice to the movement, which is primarily driven by young Kenyans outraged by the new tax measures proposed in the Finance Bill 2024. Protesters argue that these taxes will exacerbate economic hardship and inequality, pushing many into deeper poverty. They are calling for fairer economic policies, greater government accountability, and an end to police brutality against peaceful demonstrators​ (AOL.com)​​(Capital News)​.


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