Tanzania's President Samia Suluhu Hassan has announced that the government has now put strict measures to ensure that artists receive their royalties. Addressing a crowd in Mwanza, Tanzania, the first East Africa Female President revealed that starting December 2021, artists will be getting their royalties for their work used on TV, Radio, and the internet.
While at it, the sixth and current President of Tanzania admitted that Arts and Culture industry has been growing rapidly, and the state is more than willing to support and strengthen it.
“Sanaa na utamaduni, sekta hii imekuwa ikikua kwa kasi, miongoni mwa hatua tulizochukua ni kuimarisha usimamizi wa haki miliki za wasanii, nataka kuarifu vijana kuwa kuanzia Disemba mwaka huu wasanii wataanza kulipwa mirabaha yao kutokana na kazi zinazotumiwa kwenye Runinga, Redio na Mitandaoni. (Arts and culture, this industry has been growing rapidly, among the steps we have taken is to strengthen the management of artists' intellectual property rights, I want to inform the youth that from December this year artists will begin to be paid their royalties for work on TV, Radio and Internet)" said the President.
This move by The United Republic of Tanzania comes barely a month after South Africa pulled a similar move to protect and compensate artists. Just last month, the Southern African Music Rights Organisation (SAMRO) announced that registered South African songwriters, composers, and publishers whose music is used on TikTok, Facebook, and Netflix would be eligible to receive royalties.
According to reports, the directive came after a long struggle in fighting for the copyrights of creatives in South Africa.
"Samro is pleased to announce that we have entered into licensing agreements with short-form video content social media platform TikTok, global social media powerhouse Facebook, as well as the video streaming subscription platform Netflix, that will benefit members.
"Thanks to the conclusion of these binding agreements, Samro will be able to collect royalties on behalf of members, for all copyright-protected content that features on these platforms, with immediate effect, " he added.
Back home, it will be remembered that in 2020, the government, through President Uhuru Kenyatta, introduced a centralised system for collecting artists' royalties to increase their earnings.
In his speech, President Uhuru said that the new system would net Sh2 billion in royalties annually for the artists, up from the previous Sh200 million.