Sports and Finance Cabinet Secretaries are battling to control up to Ksh12 billion accruing from gaming and betting taxes.
National Treasury Cabinet Secretary Henry Rotich created the Sports, Arts and Social Development Fund, whose mandate is the same as the Sports Act 2013, which established the initial National Sports Fund.
In a Legislative Supplement published in a special issue of the Kenya Gazette, the Treasury CS stated: “In exercise of the powers conferred by Section 24(4) of the Public Finance Management Act, the Cabinet Secretary for the National Treasury and Planning makes the following Regulations: The Public Finance Management (Sports, Arts And Social Development Fund) Regulations, 2018.”
Rotich’s legal notice added: “There is established a fund to be known as the Sports, Arts and Establishment of Social Development Fund.”
It went on to specify the sources of the fund shall consist of all the proceeds required to be paid into the fund under the Betting, Lotteries and Gaming Act; Cap 131.
The legal notice further stated that all the proceeds will be required to be paid into the fund under the Income Tax Act.
Reports by the Standard indicated that the fund had Ksh12 billion, money which had been raised from betting companies after the Government increased taxation to 35 per cent.
Under the new fund, there will be an administrator, who “shall open and operate a separate bank account or accounts at the Central Bank of Kenya or a bank to be approved by the board and the National Treasury in accordance with the Act”.
The directive takes money from the Sports docket, which is struggling from under-funding and which has not been able to meet its financial responsibilities towards sports federations.
Echesa was quoted stating: “I have heard that some changes were made to what we had proposed and what we have is not what we had suggested. However, we are waiting for the document to go to Parliament and then we can protest.”