Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta has announced a new centralised system for the collection of royalties. The new system is expected to net Sh2 billion in annual royalties from the current Sh200 million.
According to a report by SDE, the president also revealed that payment of artistes’ royalties will be a precondition for the renewal of licences for businesses that make use of creative products from Kenyan acts.
He ordered the relevant ministries to ensure public service vehicles, hospitals and broadcasters all meet their obligations of paying the artistes’ tariff.
“This will be a basic requirement for renewal of business licences for broadcasting houses, matatus, hotels, bars and other such premises,” he said.
With the new system, content service providers will be eliminated so as to allow artists to work directly with the digital platforms.
“Content service providers who work with digital platforms such as Skiza and Viusasa will be eliminated. This is because they sit outside the collection management organisations. My practical direction on this is to have all rights holders register on the National Rights Registry.”
Over the years, Kenyan artistes have been complaining of abysmal payment of royalties. Just last year, musicians raised an uproar after receiving Sh2,500 from the Music Copyright Society of Kenya as their 2018 royalties.
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