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What The Bottom Up Economy System Really Is

Nominated Senator Karen Nyamu has defended the Finance Bill. Speaking to online creators at the Jenga Talanta Yetu Awards, this is what she had to say:

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“What I know about the Kenya Kwanza administration, what we promised the people on the ground is that economy itakuwa bottom up. Unaweza kuwa wewe unalia ‘oh Ruto anatutax sana na saa hiyo ametoa tax ya wale watu wako chini ameongeza for example ya wale watu wanaimport vitanda kutoka nje. Na wewe unazusha. Unazusha nini na ni kitu hata haikuhusu. Find out what does this Finance Bill say. Kuna tax imeongezwa, inakuhusu?”

Nominated Senator Karen Nyamu. Credit: Citizen Digital

She went on to urge ordinary Kenyans not to defend the wealthier ones as they get taxed. According to her, the opposition are doing what they are meant to do when they criticize the government, the public should not be carried away by them.

“Sasa wewe unatetea masos ju wanataxiwa na wewe tax zako zimepelekwa chini kwa sababu ya hiyo bottom up model. So find out wachana na story ya social media.”

What really is the Bottom Up economic model? In an interview with Citizen TV, President Ruto, then the Deputy President, said this model is about making life easier for the poor. He contrasted it with the trickle down model that existed then.

“Bottom up ni kusema tunabadilisha sera. Sera ambayo tumeendesha nayo Kenya kwa miaka hamsini, ni hii inaitwa trickle down. Ilianza pale wakati tulisema…tunawekeza mahali kuna high potential halafu tukipata marupurupu ndio tupeleke mahali kuna low potential. Hiyo ndio trickle down. Sasa tunasema badala ya kuwekeza mahali kuna high potential, wacha tuwekeze mahali kuna low potential.”

A diagram illustrating the trickle down economics. Credit: Investopedia

He remarked that the Bottom Up system is about ensuring the government invests in labour intensive projects so as to create more jobs for Kenyans, especially casual labourers and the unemployed. As is today, this new model is being implemented in projects such as The Affordable Housing project where casual labourers have been employed.

The Bottom Up system is about looking at how to cater to the needs of those who are at the bottom of the pyramid. The then DP Ruto spoke about how because of the trickle down model, government finances do not reach the poor. They are forced to borrow from shylocks. To mitigate this, he had promised to make finances reach the poor. A promise that he kept by introducing the Hustler Fund where the interest rate is 8% annually.

Shylocks charge a significantly higher interest rate, approximately 3000+ per annum, making it difficult and impractical to stay with their money for a long period of time. Hopefully this explanation puts to rest questions about the Bottom Up Model.  

Read also:  Tension Between DP Rigathi and President Ruto’s Allies

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