Jalang’o: Content Creators Showing Off Expensive Cars, Houses To Blame For Introduction Of 15% Tax

Lang’ata MP Phelix Odiwuor, otherwise known as Jalang’o has explained why it is difficult to stop the proposed 15% withholding tax rate on content creators.

Notably, content creation has grown over the years, and creators earn a living through sponsored content, digital campaigns or ad revenues.

Just like other countries, local content creators make money from platforms such as YouTube, Tiktok and Facebook. 

Additionally, the government further wants to tax subscription services where the audience pays a periodic fee to access the content.

The bill also mentions creators who use membership programs for exclusive content and licensing content such as photographs or music to other businesses or individuals for use in their own projects should pay tax.

This means if the 2023 Finance Bill is approved by President William Ruto, income earned through digital content monetisation will be subject to a 15% withholding tax.

In a video on his YouTube channel, Jalang’o explained possible reasons the government is introducing the content creators tax.

He gave instances which he believes could have been the root of the bill’s introduction which has since been opposed by most content creators.

“How do I convince the government that content creators don’t have money and they are unable to pay the 15% tax when what they show out there is that they are millionaires,” he said.

For example, Jalang’o made a reference to radio presenter Oga Obinna buying himself a brand new car which he recently flaunted on social media.

“Some of the things I was being asked, for example, was, ‘your very good friend Oga Obinna has turned 33 and he gifted himself a small gift. This small gift is a VW Touareg which would easily cost him Ksh 5 million to Ksh 7 million’

“…’do you know how long it’ll take for a teacher who is being taxed to save and buy that Touareg?’. I said that is just one of the cases maybe he makes his money from somewhere else that is not content creation,” Jalang’o said.

The MP then talked of a video of socialite Amber Ray that surfaced online bragging about how she uses over Ksh 300,000 daily.

He also claimed that comedian Eric Omondi has made Ksh 10 million from content creation in the last one month.

Jalang’o noted that the above mentioned revenue is exclusive of money that he makes from doing advertisements.

“Eric works with over five companies and his rate card doesn’t come cheap. That’s just last month and it’s not clear of he pays tax,” he said.

Radio presenter and comedian Mulamwah was also roped into the mix for flaunting millions on his social media pages.

“Apart from the money, he has several advertisements and behind him, he has this mega mansion that he is building in the village,” Jalang’o opined.

Bahati was also among content creators whose source of income was a topic of discussion having recently bought a Ksh 27.5 million 2-story four-bedroom maisonette.

The musician also earns a sizable amount of money from advertisements, and he owns among other properties, a Toyota Prado TX, Mercedes Benz C250 and a van.

Vicent Mboya, a YouTuber was also faulted over his tendencies of flaunting his cash on his Instagram page.

“If you see Mboya who, just the other day, was asking for Ksh 18,000 to pay rent, has bought a car and inside his car, he has a wad of money that he shows,” Jalang’o said.

The MP also mentioned Crazy Kennar, Sammy Kioko, Mungai Eve, Nicholas Kioko, Akothee, Kabi Wa Jesus and Natalie Tewa among other content creators whose source of revenue is under scrutiny.

“The government doesn’t see that you built your mother a house or you bought yourself a new car, they see an opportunity to ask where you got this money from,” Jalang’o said.