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The clear message to Kenya from the International Monetary Fund is, “If the people can’t eat bread let them eat bullets.” For nearly a month Kenyans, mostly young people dubbing themselves “Gen Z,” have been demonstrating against the policies being imposed on the country by the International Monetary Fund. These are policies aimed at looting the population in order to pay off foreign creditors. The government of President William Ruto responded by calling out heavily armed riot police and the Kenya Defense Force to put down the demonstrators, killing up to 30 people. The popular outrage this created prompted Ruto to withdraw the Finance Bill which included sharply higher taxes which triggered massive protest demonstrations.

No sooner had Ruto announced the dropping of the finance bill, had he issued instructions to reduce expenditures to cover the loss in new tax revenue. The reduction will amount to roughly $2.7 billion, an official statement reads.

“Further, I have directed the National Treasury to immediately submit to Parliament amendments to the Division of Revenue Act 2024 to reflect the reduced revenues occasioned by the rejected Finance Bill,” Ruto’s directive says.

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