by Edna Okoth
TIFA released a survey on the new Finance Budget 2023 which focuses on several aspects of the New Finance Budget 2023 which includes awareness of price change in basic commodities since the 2022 election, views on the New Budget (positive and negative elements) and impacts , views and expectations of the housing levy program.
Speaking during the press briefing , TIFA Research Analyst Dr. Tom Wolf explained that with regard to the presentation of data, TIFA has used correlation -variables illustrating the degree to which certain demographic and attitudinal factors influencing respondents views regarding particular issues.
He stated that Kenyan’s view of President Ruto’s First Budget showed that the best provisions in the budget 2023 included Education, Housing Levy and Subsidized Farm inputs while the worst provisions in the 2023 Budget include VAT on fuel from 8-16%, increase on tax on basic foods and the Housing Levy.
“In view of the housing levy, our research shows that 69% of people do not support the housing Levy, 24% support the housing Levy and 7% did not respond and on the expectations that those who pay the housing Levy will ever get a house showed that 54% of people are certain that they will not get the houses, 15% were on the will or will not thought, 11% are certain that they will get the houses and 20% were not sure,” explained Dr. Tom Wolf.
He continued by highlighting that some issues on economic demographics include employment status and monthly income, ability to save and main use of savings to those who can save, main household cooking fuel and proportion of Food obtained from Family shamba.
“Nearly one-third of Kenyans who are jobless have never been employed (31%), with some others now jobless have worked in the past (8%), most of these working are self employed (29%) with only about one-in-ten employed full-time (11%), ” illustrated Dr Tom Wolf.
On economic policy, he focused much on awareness of price changes, in basic commodities since 2022 election, views on the new budget, views and expectations of the housing levy program.
“Among commodities most Kenyans consume or use, they are most aware of price increases for unga, sugar and petroleum products since the Ruto government assumed office (61%, 51% and 34% respectively) but at the same time, only a handful of Kenyans are unaware of any products whose prices have not risen (7%) for by contrast more than three-quarters cannot identify any products whose prices have decreased during this same period,” added Dr. Tom Wolf.
He noted that while there is a clear correlation between monthly income and the expectation of being liable to pay into the new housing fund, it is striking that even among these currently earning nothing, one quarter have such an expectation while only slightly more than twice that proportion(59%) in the highest income group do so and facts state that only those in the formal sector fall within its mandatory deduction category.
“It is thus clear that the results contained in this release, regarding especially the best and worst aspects of the budget for ordinary Kenyans as well as its perceived main purpose and support for the housing levy that there is considerable disquiet even among pro-government supporters and at the same time the opposition supporters are far from completely unified against it, suggesting that given the largely similar needs and desires of most Kenyans in shaping political orientations, the political terrain is common with the economic ones is likely to become increasingly fluid,” concluded Dr Tom Wolf.