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Kenya Colony

Volume 154: debated on Monday 22 May 1922

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asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies whether he is aware that the direct taxation imposed upon the natives of Kenya Colony is now three times what it was before the War, and that import duties have been raised to 20 per cent., ad valorem, and railway rates in some cases 75 per cent.; and will he have inquiries made into the situation?

I am aware that direct and indirect taxation have been considerably increased, as stated in the question. Railway rates have also been increased in varying degrees for different classes of goods. The native hut tax has been reduced this year by 25 per cent., and the question of the general revision of railway rates is now under consideration. The increases of taxation were necessary to meet the cost of administration, which has been greatly and unavoidably increased by causes connected with the War. The whole question of the reduction of expenditure and the revision of taxation is now engaging the attention of a Committee specially appointed for this purpose by the Governor.