NAIROBI, Kenya, Feb 10 – Constitutional Affairs Minister Mutula Kilonzo has admitted he owes the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) tax arrears but asserts that his entire parliamentary salary goes to the taxman to clear the dues, since he made his debut to Parliament in 2003.
Kilonzo dismissed a figure being floated in the public, which places his tax arrears at Sh352 million, saying that even large corporations wouldn’t owe the KRA such an amount.
He added that the issue was a personal matter that was being used to harass him politically.
“I’m actually paying my taxes and I’ve been attaching my salary. I would even expect you to donate something to me now that you know I haven’t earned a single cent from Parliament for the past eight years,” he told this reported on phone.
“Can you just calculate for me how much income one would have made to deserve paying Sh350 million as taxes?” he asked.
The Justice Minister further dared MPs to file a censure Motion against him over the matter, maintaining that he would not allow anything to distract him from carrying out his national duties.
“I have come a long way but my position will not be changed even if you censure me for a million years; I will wake up and tell you the same thing. In fact, I don’t see why we should waste such valuable time discussing such a thing when there are so many national things to focus on,” he stressed.
The Justice Minister served as a private lawyer for retired President Daniel arap Moi, and it was during this time that he failed to remit taxes to the KRA.
However after the Moi regime, the KRA caught up with Kilonzo demanding that he pays all the taxes accrued over the time. It is however not clear how much Kilonzo owes the taxman.
“If I am liable for tax of Sh350 million, how much income do you think I made? Would I be in politics if I earned so much money?” he asked.
Kilonzo has in recent times been bashed by several politicians who accuse him of overstepping his mandate and even going against the position held by his political party.
Last month, the Wiper Democratic Party (WDP), where Kilonzo serves as Secretary General, announced that it would determine what action to take on the Justice Minister and his Information and Communication counterpart Samuel Poghisio.
“Party members will decide what course of action to take on the two in March, during the delegates’ conference and we will also seek to know whether or not they wish to participate in the elections of party officials at the national level,” explained WDP Vice Chairman David Musila, at the time.
Kilonzo however dared the party to kick him out, if it wished, maintaining that there was no shortage of political parties.
He has remained vocal on calls for the resignation of Deputy Prime Minister Uhuru Kenyatta, insisting that he cannot continue serving office, in light of the confirmation of charges on crimes against humanity by the International Criminal Court.
“Kenyatta is still sticking to his post as Deputy Prime Minister which I don’t understand because I expected him to voluntarily step down as it is a much more superior position. So I can’t pretend that everything that I recommended has happened,” Kilonzo told Capital News in earlier interview.