Azimio One Kenya Coalition Presidential Flagbearer has pledged to permanently free Persons With Disabilities from paying tax and pay as you earn (PAYE) from their earnings should he clinch power.
“I will push for permanent tax and PAYE exemptions for PWDs instead of the current exemption which is done after every three years,” said Mr. Odinga.
According to the law, Persons With Disabilities are entitled to a tax exemption for the first Sh150,000 of their gross income.
Speaking to the PWDs representatives at Nyayo Stadium in Nairobi, Odinga said he will push for the review of the PWD Act, of 2003, to increase the employment of PWDs in the public sector from the current 5 percent to 10 percent.
“I will review the Persons with Disability Act, 2003 to increase employment of PWDs in public institutions from five percent to 10 percent”, he said.
The Orange Democratic Movement Chief further affirmed that his government will provide free education from primary to university for the PWDs.
He observed that out of 900,000 registered PWDs only 47,000 receives cash transfers from the state and to adjust this, he said he will enhance the disability fund to enable the group to venture into different activities which will earn them a living.
The former Premier also stated that he will zero-rate assistive devices for PWDs such as mobility, hearing, and sight to allow them to enjoy full participation in the day-to-day activities.
Odinga cited that exclusion of PWDs in the county’s social-economic development plans has led to slow growth of the economy.
“We will work together with them because there is a big potential and each Kenyan will be given an opportunity to make a contribution to the development of our country,” he said.
He was accompanied by his daughter, Rosemary, who partially lost her sight from a stroke.
Rosemary confirmed that her father cares for and understands the needs of Persons With Disabilities.
Westlands MP Tim Wanyonyi said his party would ensure most of the votes of the Disabled persons go to Raila.
“We are going to rally all the PWDs to vote for Raila. We will support the person who cares about our plight,” said the MP who is also a person with a disability.
The presidential hopeful said his government will end the stigma and discrimination against PWDs by investing in awareness and reforms which will ensure they are protected.