Drama unfolded on the floor of the house as a section of Azimio coalition members walked out when National Treasury CS Prof. Njuguna Ndung’u commenced reading the 2023/24 budget statement.
The legislators, who had been previously seated and following proceedings in the house, staged the walkout as the CS took the floor to present the maiden Kenya Kwanza administration’s budget.
National Assembly speaker Moses Wetangula had earlier informed members that the treasury cabinet secretary would make the pronouncement on the 2023/24 budget without any questions or clarifications of any sort.
After a short break in proceedings occasioned by the walkout, Wetangula would signal the CS to continue presenting the budget statement where he would highlight five points that he described as major concerns for Kenyans. They included high cost of living, high unemployment rate, high tax burden, wastage of public resources and increased public debt.
Speaking shortly after the walkout, National Assembly minority whip Junet Mohammed said the opposition had no faith in the budget statement whose reading was underway and will push for amendments next week in the third reading of the Finance Bill 2023.
The development came just hours after the Finance Bill sailed through the second reading stage paving way for its third reading and determination by the committee of the whole House next week.
In a heated session in parliament, 176 Mps voted to endorse the Bill at the second reading stage with 81 MPs opposing.