"I want people to understand, gambling is not a bad thing if you do it within the framework of what it's meant to be, which is fun and entertaining."
- Michael Jordan
The much-anticipated Budget for Kenya has been released.
Kenyan gamblers, smokers, and drinkers will not be happy with the content of the new budget presented by Cabinet Secretary for the National Treasury, Henry K. Rotich to Members of Parliament.
Rotich, who was nominated by President Uhuru Kenyatta as Cabinet Secretary for the National Treasury on 23 April 2013 presented the budget a few hours today to reveal the plans for revenue and expenditure.
The budget statement revealed that gamblers, smokers, and consumers of alcohol were dealt a big blow since they were targeted as revenue generators for the country.
In his budget statement, Rotich revealed that in order to obtain funding for the country's Sh3.02 trillion budget, the government will target gamblers and alcoholic drinkers for revenue streams.
For gamblers, Rotich proposed the introduction of excise duty on betting activities at the rate of 10 percent of the amount staked.
According to him, this he said is aimed at curtailing the negative effects arising from betting activities.
"Betting has become widespread in our society and its expansion has had negative social effects, particularly to the young and vulnerable members of our society. In order to curtail the negative effects arising from betting activities," Rotich said.
For the first time, betting firms in the country will be required to pay Sh100 million for gaming securities. This will serve as a cushion to gamblers should the betting firms refuse to pay a ‘windfall’.
In the 2019/2020 budget, Rotich proposed excise duties on alcohol and tobacco to be increased.
Under the new proposal, a 750ml bottle of wine will have an excise duty of Sh136 which is Sh18 more from the current rate.
The duty of a bottle of whiskey will go up by Sh24 to Sh182 for a 750ml bottle.
Smokers have also not been spared in the new budget.
The excise duty on a packet of 20 cigarettes will increase by Sh8 to Sh61 per packet.
Header Image Credit: The Star