Kenyan musicians have recieved the controversial Sh100 million from governemnt as the ministry is still unable to compile an all-inclusive list. President Uhuru Kenyatta directed Sports, Culture and Heritage ministry to help artistes, actors and musicians sustain themselves as they continue to entertain the country during the period of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Artists’ umbrella bodies as Music Copyright Society of Kenya (MCSK), Kenya Association of Music Producers (Kamp) and Performance Rights Society of Kenya (PRiSK) – issued a joint statement where they made it clear that they have not recieved the funds.
They claim that they have made follow ups with the relevant docket but they have recieved any response on the matter.
During a national address to the public on coronavirus pandemic on April 6, President Kenyatta directed the ministry to avail Sh100 million from the Sports Fund to help cushion creatives from the economical effects covid-19.
“We wrote a letter to the Ministry of Sports, Culture and Heritage on April 20 to make follow up on the funds. As of today, we have not received any feedback,” read part of the joint statement.
The ministry is expected to come up a criteria of disbursing the funds to ensure that it gets to all musicians registered the three Collective Management Organisations (CMOs) and other artistes as actors should also benefit from the fund but coming up with a criteria or concrete data is taking the ministry ages.
Kenya Copyright Board CEO Edward Sigei asked the artists to remain patient amid speculations that that eac creative head may pocket only Sh3,000. Kenyan artists have always complained over small earnings from CMO’s, averagely Sh2500 in six months or a whole year.
The long wait continues as individual organisations in the cartel-filled entertainment sector work out modalities of cushioning artistes from the impact of Covid-19 pandemic.
Barely a week ago, MCSK paid out Sh34 million to artistes as royalties as PRiSK paid out Sh14.7 million to its members.uhuru-s-sh100m-pledge
“The entertainment industry is hard-hit and to mitigate the situation for our members, we are doing everything possible to ensure that their dues are paid,” said Japheth Kassanga, the MCSK chairman.
Kenyan filmmakers also got some Sh25 million from the Kenya Film Commission (KFC) giving about Sh25 million in a project set to empower them last week which will provide film and video-related funding in education and training categories.
KFC is now running a mobile phone film competition themed Covid-19 – Staying at Home and Social Distancing where the winner will pocket Sh200,000 and the first and second runners up pocketing Sh150,000 and Sh100,000 respectively.
“We need funding to help grow the industry, we are exploiting every opportunity and taking every challenge head-on as we engage around the situation of Covid-19,” said Timothy Owase, the KFC CEO.
Entertainment has been affected by the abnormality brought by the pandemic not just in Kenya but globally as many projects have been put off, postponed or cancelled.
Leading international movie firms like Disney, Universal and Grimmfest have now opted to release some of their productions through online streaming platforms.