In a bold statement addressing the ongoing dispute over artist royalties, Public Service Cabinet Secretary Moses Kuria rebuked Music Copyright Society of Kenya (MCSK) CEO Ezekiel Mutua, asserting that Kenya is no longer a place for exploitation of artists.

Speaking on Wednesday night, Kuria emphasized that the era of deceiving Kenyan artists for personal gain is over, stating firmly that accountability will be demanded through proper channels.

While emphasizing the importance of following due process, Kuria emphasized the government’s commitment to rectifying the situation and protecting the rights of artists.

Directly addressing Mutua, Kuria stated, “There are no more fools in this country. Questions will be asked, serious questions, following the appropriate procedures. The days of exploiting our artists and talents are long gone.”

He underscored the government’s efforts to support artistic talent while condemning any actions that undermine the welfare of artists. Kuria assured that the government is resolute in addressing the issue and ensuring that artists receive their due rights.

Kuria’s remarks came amid heightened tensions surrounding discrepancies in royalty distributions declared by various Collective Management Organisations (CMOs), prompting the Kenya Copyright Board (Kecobo) to initiate investigations.

The Chairman of Kecobo, Joshua Kutuny, raised concerns over disparities in the amounts declared by MCSK, Kenya Association of Music Producers (KAMP), and Performers Rights Society of Kenya (PRISK).

Responding to Kutuny’s claims, Mutua defended MCSK’s distribution process, stating that the criteria used for allocation adhered to the rules outlined in a public notice issued by the organization. He questioned the validity of the “70 percent rule” referenced by Kecobo, challenging its existence in Kenyan law.

Mutua also highlighted Skiza tunes as a significant revenue stream for Kenyan artists and called for transparency in its administration, urging Kecobo to focus on areas of genuine concern rather than engaging in distractions.

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