, NAIROBI, Kenya, May 18 – Renowned taxation expert Dr Obadiah Kimani has launched a new book on Tax Law in Kenya highlighting major gaps in the sector.
The book titled ‘Tax Law In Kenya’ was launched in Nairobi on Thursday night, in an event attended by dignitaries from various sectors—among them George Muhoho, Dr James Mageria who is the Chairman of Karen Hospital, Gatundu South MP Moses Kuria and Dr Korir Sing’oei from the Deputy President’s office.
Speaking at the launch, Dr Kimani said his book aims at bringing awareness about taxation through a handy copy to help unravel day-to-day tax ‘mysteries’.
“The book intends to tell the reader how to live with taxation even if others consider it a necessary evil,” he said, adding that it will also provide details on the relevant tax laws in Kenya for purposes of general illumination.”
The book seeks to explain all the key tax jargons in simple and easily comprehensible language, and he has assured that it will “provide a text book for Universities, Colleges, audit, company secretarial & legal practicing firms as a source of crucial knowledge and information.”
It further seeks to provide the latest in tax law trends and best practice benchmarks in Kenya other parts of the world and provide a basis for yearly continuous review and update in changes resulting from new laws and/or related amendments resulting from National Budget Proposals.
Dr Kimani told participants that his book will provide investors focused on investing in Kenya with fodder to engage in tax planning based on available incentives, regulations and conditions besides giving individual taxpayers a reference point when they desire to decode taxation procedures.
“This book will be useful in both East and Central Africa as research absence of such a book, and finally give would-be buyers a reason to add an important reference book in their shelves,” he said.
He said he decided to write the book because he felt that in the course of pursuing his career, he had progressively gathered a lot of knowledge on subject matters around the theme of taxation and the law. After years of familiarizing himself with various tax statutes and other tax- related information specific to Kenya, Eastern Africa, Africa and elsewhere.
“I, therefore, made up my mind to document the knowledge I had accumulated in this subject in order to share it with others and as a repository of knowledge for reference by future generations,” he explained.
He said his decision was also informed by what he described as the “yawning gap in tax knowledge and information among taxpayers as well as audit and legal practitioners.”
In Kenya, the statutes that govern taxation include the Income Tax Act (Cap 470), The Tax Procedures Act (2015) and Tax Appeal Tribunal Act (2013). The main literature in tax in Kenya is essentially contained in these statutes.
All this, he said, needs proper interpretation.
“Not much effort has been made to explain away what the obligations—or the dos and don’ts—on the part of the taxpayer really are. Without proper interpretation of the statutes that guide tax, people run the danger of incriminating themselves or even giving Caesar more than he deserves,” he noted.