RT-Engels: 26-06-2024,

William Ruto has addressed the nation following unrest over proposed tax increases

Kenyan President William Ruto has said he will not sign a finance bill providing for major tax increases, which had caused deadly riots in the country. Announcing the decision on Wednesday, Ruto said the people’s voices had been heard.

Anti-tax protesters clashed with police in Kenya on Tuesday after lawmakers voted 195-106 to pass the government’s 2024 Finance Bill. The legislation included tax increases intended to generate $2.7 billion in revenue in line with International Monetary Fund (IMF) demands.

Protesters claimed that the tax increases in the bill would raise the cost of living.

“Having reflected on the continuing conversation around the Finance Bill 2024 and listening keenly to the people of Kenya, who have said loudly that they want nothing to do with the Finance Bill 2024… I concede. I will not sign the Finance Bill 2024. It will be fully withdrawn,” Ruto said as he addressed the nation from State House.

The Kenyan government has mobilized all available resources to prevent a repeat of the violence. The protesters were demanding Ruto’s resignation and threatening a “total shutdown.”

“About 214 Kenyans were involved in various escalations and many of them went to hospital,” the president said in response to questions.

Kenyan leader vows crackdown amid deadly protests (VIDEO)

Simon Kigondu, president of the Kenya Medical Association, reported that at least 13 people had lost their lives in Tuesday’s protests.

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