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Music Copyright Society of Kenya now banned from collecting music royalties

The Kenya Copyright Board (KECOBO) has written to the Inspector General of police, Joseph Boinett to notify him of its decision to ban Music Copyright Society of Kenya (MCSK) from collecting music royalties on behalf of local artistes.

In letter dated May 28th, 2018 seen by Nairobi News, KECOBO requested the Inspector General office to stop providing MCSK with security support as the organization has role in collecting music royalties on behalf of the artistes.

This move comes after KECOBO placed an advert on the dailies, informing members of the public that it has only licensed three Collective Management Organizations (CMOs), namely Music Publishers Association of Kenya (MPAKE), Kenya Association of Music Producers (KAMP) and Performers Rights Society of Kenya (PRISK) to do the work that previously MCSK was passionate about.

However, the licensing of the three bodies is on condition that they do a joint license.


Only the three CMOs are now allowed to collect and distribute music royalties from businesses and individuals using music in public places and for commercial purposes.

The move by KECOBO to cut out MCSK comes at a time when there has been a wide outcry from local artistes over embezzlement of their royalties by the latter.

In November 2014, controversial gospel musician Ringtone together with other artistes staged a protest  during the third annual MCSK award ceremony at the Carnivore grounds protesting against gross misappropriation of artistes’ royalties funds by MCSK.

In May 2015, gospel singer Pitson revealed that he had only received Sh4,000 as royalties for his hit song Lingala ya Yesu while in 2016, the group Elani was embroiled in a showdown with MCSK over unpaid royalties.

KECOBO therefore notifies members of the public to be aware that MCSK is not licensed to collect any royalties.