THE CUTTING EDGE: June 19, 2020

Thursday June 18 2020

TAXING SENIOR CITIZENS: The Budget proposal by National Treasury Cabinet Secretary Ukur Yatani to tax the pensions of retirees aged 65 and above, which awaits MPs’ approval, “is inhuman and immoral”, remarks Peter Githae. After serving diligently during their working years, Peter strongly feels that Mr Yatani should not encroach on the retirees’ dues for whatever reason. “At 65 and above, most of these retirees are too frail for any side hustles to earn an extra income. Some of them even wear diapers because of old-age illnesses and all literally have one leg in the grave!” Peter would like the elderly spared the agony of having to pay any additional tax. His contact is [email protected]

DISEASE LOOPHOLE: The laxity at county boundaries in enforcing the Covid-19 safety measures is worrying as the deadly virus spreads into the rural areas, says Nyeri resident Nicholas Murithi. At the Sagana and Karatina roadblocks on the Nairobi-Nyeri highway, he reports, there is hardly any taking of the temperature until 8.30am and, by 4.30pm, the health officers have deserted their stations. “Why can’t they work in shifts, just like the police? We have people travelling up to and beyond the 9pm curfew time and they must be tested.” His contact is [email protected]

FUELLING DISASTER: Quite surprising to Edward Mwiti on the budget, he remarks, is the decision to tax cooking gas when the government is keen to discourage the felling of trees to burn charcoal. He would rather the ruling class, which is pampered with huge salaries and allowances, started leading by example by accepting massive cuts of their own remuneration. “If the leaders are sincere, they must make sacrifices.” If their motivation is to make more money and not service to the people, he advises, the private sector would be the place for them to go. “Let the selfless people run the government. Just stop draining the public coffers and looking for more.” His contact is [email protected]


DEAR GAS: There have lately been seemingly endless queues of people from Mukuru slums at a petrol station in Nairobi’s Industrial Area waiting to buy paraffin, says Eric Ambuche. This follows the massive drop of the price per litre to Sh59. But they have resorted to kerosene for lighting and cooking since the cost of cooking gas and electricity is way beyond their means, as they also grapple with water shortages. Alluding to the pandemic, he adds: “Their lives have become even more miserable. The government should come to their rescue,” pleads Eric, whose contact is [email protected]

ROAD FROM HELL: Kiambu resident Victor Isadia is appalled at the condition of roads in the county and wishes Governor James Nyoro and his minister for roads could pay attention to this. He singles out the murram road from Canaan Estate all the way to Zone T in Theta Ward, which was last touched up three years ago and is in a pathetic state. Taking a beating from the horrible condition of the roads are motorists. “Car bumpers sometimes fall off and, every week, we must visit mechanics to replace broken parts. It’s worse when it rains as the road becomes almost impassable, making life hell for us. Our efforts to seek help from our MCA have failed.” His contact is [email protected]

TUSKY’S DISTRESS: Echoing the concern about what she describes as “Tusky’s distress”, Joanne Wawira is worried that the retail chain, which has been doing pretty well, has lately shown worrying signs about its business health. “Can management, please, do something about Tusky’s Supermarket? I would not wish to see it go down like Nakumatt, Uchumi, Choppies and Ukwala. I’m a frequent customer at its outlets.” She proposes the closure of non-performing branches and start paying the suppliers. Her contact is [email protected]

Have a stable day, won’t you!