The Court of Appeal denied the government’s request to resume housing levy deductions from Kenyans. This is a win for citizens. The housing levy was ruled unconstitutional by the High Court and remains suspended.
Judges Lydia Achode, John Mativo, and Mwaniki Gachoka emphasized the need to await the appeal’s decision. They noted there would be irreversible consequences if the laws’ constitutional invalidity is confirmed.
The Attorney General and National Treasury sought to stop the High Court’s judgment implementation, citing a potential budget crisis. The appeal judges rejected this, prioritizing public interest and waiting for the appeal’s resolution.
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The housing levy was initially suspended on November 28, 2023, due to discrimination against employed Kenyans. The High Court allowed the suspension until January 10, 2024, pending an appeal.
In the recent ruling, the judges maintained the suspension and stopped further deductions as the government’s collection window closed on January 26. They argued against deductions without a final verdict, citing complications in refunding if deemed unconstitutional.
The judges highlighted the High Court’s finding that the housing levy lacked a legal framework and unfairly targeted specific Kenyan workers. This decision marks a crucial moment in the ongoing legal battle, offering relief to citizens and paving the way for a detailed examination of the challenged laws’ constitutional implications.