Finance Bill 2024

For the past few days, the digital landscape in Kenya has been ablaze with fervor as enraged netizens take to social media platforms to voice their discontent with the proposed Finance Bill 2024. Fuelled by frustration over incessant taxation and a perceived lack of tangible results from the government, citizens are engaging in online campaigns to reject the bill and demand accountability from their legislators.

In a whatever it takes moment, Kenyans yesternight shared private phone numbers of their legislators who are bound to vote on the Finance Bill 2024 on Twitter rallying everyone who could see it to text, call, and ask them to #RejectFinanceBill2024. This groundswell of activism marks a pivotal moment in Kenya’s socio-political landscape, where ordinary citizens are leveraging the power of social media to hold their leaders to account.

By sharing phone numbers en masse, netizens are effectively bypassing traditional channels of communication to directly engage with their elected representatives. This digital onslaught serves as a stark reminder to politicians that they are not insulated from the wrath of their constituents and that their actions—or lack thereof—will not go unnoticed or unchallenged.

At the heart of the matter lies a fundamental question of representation and responsibility. Since this Government was elected, Kenyan citizens have borne the brunt of ever-increasing taxes, purportedly for the betterment of society. Yet, despite these hefty financial burdens, many feel disillusioned by the lack of visible improvements in public services, infrastructure, and overall quality of life. It’s a bitter pill to swallow when hard-earned income disappears into a black hole of bureaucracy, with little to no discernible impact on the daily lives of the populace.

The Finance Bill 2024 represents yet another instance of the government’s insatiable appetite for revenue generation without commensurate accountability. From increased taxes on bread to expanded income tax, the proposed measures threaten to further burden already struggling households and businesses. In a country where poverty and inequality remain persistent challenges, such regressive taxation policies only serve to widen the gap between the haves and the have-nots, exacerbating social tensions and deepening economic hardship for the most vulnerable segments of society.

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But Kenyan netizens (me included) refuse to remain silent spectators to this fiscal injustice. Armed with perhaps nothing more than smartphones and a collective sense of outrage (since the only other thing is the ballot and that is well, a million years from now), they have taken matters into their own hands, mobilizing online campaigns on major social media platforms, from Twitter to Tiktok and even Facebook to rally support for the rejection of the Finance Bill 2024.

In a democracy, the government derives its legitimacy from the consent of the governed. Yet, this is not the case in Kenya if anything Olekina Ledama, Narok senator said on Live TV is to go by.

“All the views of Kenyans in regards to the painful reality, none of them will be considered,” he said.

When that consent is eroded by a disconnect between rulers and the ruled, it becomes imperative for citizens to assert their rights and demand accountability from those in power. The current wave of online activism in Kenya is a testament to the resilience of democratic ideals in the face of adversity, a reaffirmation of the principle that power ultimately resides with the people.

As the battle over the Finance Bill 2024 rages on in the digital arena, it’s clear that the stakes extend far beyond fiscal policy. At its core, this is a struggle for the soul of Kenyan democracy, a fight to reclaim the promise of a government that works for the betterment of all its citizens, not just the privileged few. In standing up to be heard, Kenyan netizens are sending a powerful message to their leaders: heed our voices or face the consequences at the ballot box. The choice may be yours, but the power belongs to us.

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Nigel Jr.
As a tech enthusiast and expert, Nigel Jr. is dedicated to providing in-depth and insightful content on all things technology. With a background in online journalism, product reviewing, and tech creation, Nigel has become a trusted source for all things tech.

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