The Kenyan Court of Appeal has approved a healthcare insurance levy that was previously banned.
President William Ruto wants to make sure that every person in Kenya can get healthcare they can afford. This is called the Social Health Insurance Fund (SHIF).
But a lot of people don’t like it because they think it’s a new tax.
Critics say the fee will make the cost of living higher, which caused a lot of protests last year.
The SHIF launch was stopped by the High Court last November because businessman Joseph Enock Aura filed a petition against parts of the program.
This made President Ruto upset, along with the suspension of a controversial housing tax. He recently accused some judges of corruption in public. He said the courts were teaming up with the other party to stop his government’s plans, which made lawyers protest.
The SHIF is replacing the old National Health Insurance Fund because a lot of money from taxpayers has been lost due to corruption.
On Friday, a group of judges ended the ban because they thought it was a threat to the health rights of many people who were not involved in the case.
However, the court stopped the parts that made it necessary for people to sign up for the program.
All employees need to give 2. 75% of their pay to the new health fund.
The new rule doesn’t say what happens if people can’t pay, but President Ruto promised that the government would cover the costs for them.
People who don’t like the new health plan say that the 2. 75% deduction is a big increase from what they used to pay to the NHIF. This is in addition to the recent increase in fuel prices and living costs.
Some people worry that the new healthcare organization will use most of the money it collects for things like paperwork and office expenses, instead of using it for actual healthcare.
Last year in June, Mr. Ruto approved a new law called the Finance Act. This new law made both employers and employees pay a 1. 5% housing levy, which many people did not like.
The government wants to offer housing that low-income people can afford. The levy is being disputed in court.