The Music Copyright Society of Kenya (MCSK) CEO Ezekiel Mutua has come out to explain the delay in the payment of royalties to thousands of artistes.
Mutua revealed that the society has disbursed royalties to over 6,000 artistes in an exercise that is expected to come to an end on March 29, 2024.
In a statement, the CEO said that they are verifying details for some artistes, even as they wait for others to update their crucial data before their royalties are disbursed.
"Three weeks ago, MCSK ran this public notice to inform our members of the royalty distribution dates, rules and other important information. The notice states clearly that payment of royalties would take place between January 25th (which was the event at Safari Park Hotel on Thursday) and 29th March 2024. We have 16000 members and we couldn't gather all of them in one place," Mutua stated.
"We pay in batches depending on registration numbers and the verification of details. If one has not submitted their KRA Pin numbers, ID and mobile numbers are not the ones with M-Pesa registration, then we can't pay. We verify all the necessary information before distributing and where there are discrepancies we call the members to clarify."
According to Mutua, artistes have enough time to submit their data for verification.
"We have also given MCSK members sufficient time to update their records and we hope to clear all payments before the March 29th deadline. We have already done over 6000 payments. I urge members to check the MCSK website and our social media platforms, call or visit our offices to update their records," he added.
Mutua blames top artistes
The Moral Cop, as he is popularly monikered, has however blamed some popular musicians for failing to submit all their works, despite having great hits which are performing relatively well.
"Some of the popular musicians in Kenya have not updated their works with MCSK. We have members with very many great songs, but they only submitted one or two songs. Members need to ensure all their works are submitted, otherwise we end up with a situation where a popular musician earns much less than others because they have not updated their records with us," Mutua explained.
"For artists to gain from their artistic and dramatic works must begin to pay attention to detail. Music is serious business and we must treat it as such."
On January 25, 2024, MCSK started disbursing a Ksh20 million payout to 16,000 Kenyan musicians.