Nominated Senator Karen Nyamu has called for an increase in the minimum wage by 50 per cent, citing harsh economic conditions and elevated inflation levels.
Karen Nyamu kicks off plan to increase minimum wage for Kenyans by 50%
Karen Nyamu has called on the government to increase the minimum wage by 50 per cent
Nyamu's call comes in the wake of a high cost of living that has affected many Kenyans.
In a notice of motion that she will table before parliament on Wednesday, March 22, Nyamu proposed that the minimum wage be increased to Sh22,680, up from the current Sh15,120.
Nyamu argued that labour is one of the most critical factors of production, essential for the growth and development of any economy.
She noted that the government collects significant revenues from employees through taxes and other statutory deductions, and increasing the minimum wage would further widen the tax base.
According to Nyamu, better worker payments translate into increased productivity, leading to higher returns for employers and more revenues for the government.
She added that the current minimum wage is too low for workers to survive in harsh economic conditions, compounded by the rising inflation rate.
To achieve her objectives, Nyamu wants the Cabinet Secretary for Labour to consult with the wage council and publish a new order to increase the minimum wage by 50%, per the Labor Institution Act, 2007.
Such an increase would go a long way in improving the living standards of Kenyan workers, who have been grappling with the rising cost of living in recent years.
The last revision was done in 2022 when the wage was raised from Sh13,500 to Sh15,120, a 12 per cent increase announced by the then President, Uhuru Kenyatta.
Nyamu's motion will be eagerly awaited by workers keen to see an increase in the minimum wage.
However, it remains to be seen how the government will respond to the proposed increase, given the current economic challenges facing the country.
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