MinBane

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Archive for the tag “Social Media”

Zimbabwe: Statement from ZAPU on Political Cooperation during and after 2018 Elections (15.06.2018)

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A new look into how the poorest is hit by new Social Media Tax!

Twaweza statistics published on Twitter 8th June 2018

Again, there is proof that the Parliamentary Report on the Exercise Duty Bill Amendment of 2018 was not accurate and not directed to its citizens. I have already questioned it and the lack of due diligence as the 9 page report. The report are directly saying the tax rise and reasons for issuing it. Therefore, I will again show the lowest levels civil servants. They are on salaries, not hawking for money or getting random paychecks. So their estimations are possible to do. The street hustlers will struggle with this. Even the lowest paying civil servants will as well.

By the time of November 2017, the lowest paid salaries for certain government employees are yearly about 250,000 shillings likes the U8 Local Government Workers. Others are the likes of U7 Primary School Teachers about 380,000 shillings. For the U8 Monthly salary about 20,000 shillings and the U7 Monthly salary about 31,000 shillings.

When knowing the lowest have 20k shillings to spend and the lowest teachers about 31k shillings. Because Twaweza has made a reasonable stat on the airtime spending plus the new tax. Everyone will be added 6k shillings. That means the one who has lost the most is the poorest who has about 14k before paying for airtime even. The next lowest is down to 25k and that is before airtime on the cell-phone. If you don’t like the numbers and the costs, no one should because this is huge added tax. An as long you can use and have it installed on your device, the state will take 200,- shillings per day.

All of the numbers I use is from Twaweza statistics. If you 9,900 on Airtime a month, the total cost a month on a phone cost 15,900. That is near the whole salary of the U8 and near half of the U7. Both showing that this is something they cannot afford to do. The ordinary rural spending about 7,900 shillings on airtime and total cost 13,900. even with that the rest of the salary for U8 in rural areas will be about 6,100 shillings. That cannot be enough to sustain their daily lives? It works for the teachers, even if it rough for the U7 who has 17,100 shillings left on their salary. This is just one of the new taxes, not on all the rest of the new issued too. Which all will hit the public differently.

While the lowest estimated usage now is the ones that spend 3,700 shillings on airtime, will totally pay 9,700 shillings. That is still a major part of salaries and nearly no use of the phone. The payment goes all to the Social Media Tax and not onto using the phone itself. They are overly taxing the public, the poorest will have to delete social media and save the money. Because they cannot afford to spend close to 10,000 shillings a month and close 120,000 shillings a year on being on WhatsApp, Facebook and Viber.

It is like the National Resistance Movement (NRM) don’t want to show their retrogressive attitude to the public. Where they are attacking the poorest in the rural areas.

This is all boggling me, that this sort of idea wasn’t put in the report and wasn’t considered. If the report and Members of Parliament cared, they would have considered the implications on the poorests. Even the lack-luster salaries of the U7 and U8, which will be severely hit by this.

Is this what Museveni’s revolution was all about eating of the peasants and taking their spoils, while taxing their leftovers and enriching themselves? Was that what the Bush-War was all about?

Take public for granted, keeping them poor and when the debt hit the fan. Make sure the poorest get doubled taxed. Peace.

Opinion: National Patriotic Front (NPF) is not ready to run in the upcoming elections!

I know that this should be surprising to anyone, as the National Patriotic Front (NPF), the G-40 and Robert Mugabe sponsored Opposition Party is far from ready to run in any elections. That is evident with the recent internal squabble and also news of recalling of their Interim President Ambrose Muthinhiri, while now the current president has become Eunice Sandi-Moyo. Jealousy Mawarire the spokesperson cannot flatter the situation or change the circumstances.

The NPF is not ready for this election, they are far from it, when they cannot decide direction. Not that I want a Goblin sponsored party to be associated in an alliance with Nelson Chamisa and the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC). Still, the NPF are not strong or wise enough to pick the road forward to the polls in July 2018. Its only under 2 months to final destination and now they are going in circles, instead of moving forward.

This here is gold-jar for the President Emmerson Mnangagwa, if the MDC are accepting this and plays along for the cash-cow of Mugabe. They are really just being tools for their new found place in the political landscape. ZANU-PF can spoil this and say the MDC is for no change, if they are following and accepting the Goblin supported services. If they even adds Grace Mugabe on the ticket as VP. Than, they are adding here like the late reports of 2017. When Mnangagwa was sent into exile in South Africa and reports was ready for Grace to rise to power. Then, they are back to pre-coup time.

NPF is eating out of this, even if they have internal problems and showing different fractions. This not long after the launch and being registered in the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC). The Party is fresh and not established. Therefore, changing interim President of NPF is a sign of weakness. Not that I am sad about that, because the Goblin shouldn’t be involved in politics, neither Grace. Both of them should retire and be relaxing at the Blue Roof. They have done more than enough and shouldn’t play at this high stakes game.

The MDC should favor themselves away, still they haven’t done so. This is a gold-mine for the ZANU-PF. It is like Mnangagwa got a birthday gift and anniversary present, that no one could foresee.

Clearly, the NPF are possibly comic relief with a twist of a goblin. That is worrying, but the MDC hasn’t shown character, as they could possibly be friends with former enemies. All of that is just weird. The NPF is not ready. Not ready at all, as long as they have inside issues. They should not try to gain votes. The NPF needs to fix the shop before trying to sell a product. Peace.

Opinion: Taxes get levied deliberately, not by a mistake!

Again, the Mobile Money and the Exercise Duty Tax Amendment of 2018 are proven to be without due diligence. There so many aspects that is left behind. This time it comes from the Minister of Finance, Planning and Economic Development (MoFPED) Matia Kasaija. Whose now is trying hard to wash his hands from the added taxes on the public. Like it would make a giant difference between a half percentage or 1 percentage of the transaction in taxes to the state. Yes, there is a difference and the cost are still hitting the public and making Mobile Money more expensive before even spending it.

This is the proof the National Resistance Movement (NRM), how they have rushed these taxes to please the President. Because there hasn’t been enough consultation or proof of the possible outcome of it. Other than some numbers hitting the wall and hopeful earnings for the state. The state needs revenue, but will they bill themselves into more trouble, as they are hitting the poorest the most. Which doesn’t use banking services. They use Mobile Money for their transfers and use the Cellphones for their transactions. That is why is worrying for the public.

The Excuse from the Minister:

““The NRM caucus and Cabinet sat and agreed on 0.5% instead of 1%. I don’t know what happened,” he said. Last week, Parliament passed a 1% tax on mobile money as part of the Excise Duty amendment Bill. The opponents of this tax say that the 1% tax on mobile money will hurt the economy, its people and it is counterproductive. “I am sorry. I was out of the country when it was passed. I will have a discussion with the President and maybe by the time I read the budget next week, a solution will have been found,” Kasaija said” (Wamala, 2018).

It help to be on vacation. I wonder if the President did the same during the Age Limit debacle, as he traveled around the globe. While the skirmishes was happening in the Parliament. Now the Minister says the same. That he now will try to fix it. No matter if he reverse it, it will still add more cost to the consumers and the ones who needs the Mobile Money. A service that is needed, as the banking system isn’t for everyone and neither is the day-to-day lives of many able to even be parts of it. That is because the state has left these groups of unemployed and poor behind.

What still worries me, is that there are no scope of the possible effect and what it will do to the economy. If there will substantial growth or down-turn. If certain groups that is hit, will be worse of and struggle more. Then the question is, will the added revenue be used in other parts of the economy to boost their need for services or just to pay off old debt?

Because, these taxes will be felt by the amounts of people who struggle, who has little or nearly none. There are plenty of them. These will pay-off huge sums for them, because this is subtracted directly from their salaries and sales as hawkers and traders, farmers and whatnot. Just sending money to relatives in up-country will be more costly. This is clearly just sending the memo, that the digital age is in for the taking and the advantages are becoming more expensive.

This wasn’t error, this was deliberate, even if you we’re away Mr. Kasaija. You can try to save face, but its better to reverse before speaking out. This is you trying to look good for the spotlight before addressing the Parliament. That is all. Peace.

Reference:

Wamala, Maria – ‘Mobile money tax was passed in error – Kasaija’ (05.06.2018) link: https://www.newvision.co.ug/new_vision/news/1479138/mobile-money-tax-passed-error-kasaija

Zimbabwe Council of Churches: Call for a non-violent and forward looking Election Campaign Period (04.06.2018)

Lack of Due Diligence on the Exercise Duty Amendment Bill of 2018!

The nine page memo on the Exercise Duty Bill Amendment of 2018 is an insult to everyone who cares about governance. The leaked Report from the Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development (MoFPED). Is really just a carbon copy of the initial taxes and rubber stamping the bill without any considerable efforts, arguments or questions to the new taxes.

It is weird that the MoFPED can get away with lax work and lack of work ethic, lack of reasonable numbers and crunches of statistics. Proof that this is actually good for society, that the new taxes on Mobil Communications, Mobile Money and Cooking Oil is of an calibre good. Alas, that is not the case, the report isn’t spelling out that. It is just saying, That it is just unfair that ones actually calling is paying taxes, but the ones using mobile data is not. However, isn’t the Telecommunication Companies already paying huge level of taxes on their profits of every sale of airtime? So now just topping it off by adding taxes on Social Media Apps and on Mobile Money? Also the VAT on the Airtime as well?

You have the tax on the airtime, tax on the profits on the airtime; you will have tax on the usage of social media and mobile money. Meaning the state gets revenue from nearly all aspects of usage of the phones. Soon you cannot open anything without withdrawing money from your account as the state is billing you extra for the top services. They are calling this “over the top service” sort of like all the benefits the Members of Parliament has and is billing on the Republic.

Therefore, reading this report, that no one questioned it or had any concern, that no one said anything or looked into the amount of usage and the cost on the cell-phone user. Neither, the added cost on the basic household for any of the new taxes. Show a unpleasant disregard for the hardships of the citizens in question. You cannot expect to be enlighten on 9 pages of a report, you cannot, because your not digging deep into a problem or a situation on a 4 page brief. Your just touching the subject matter and disregarding the issues at hand. The Parliament has recklessly added this taxes, as the President ordered in his letter. The letter from 12th March 2018 dubbed “Re: Lack of Seriousness in Tax Collection”. As they are just following his words and not considering any implications. That is what is bugging me.

If these was serious MPs who cared about the constituents and the citizens in general, before imposing taxes, they would see what estimates and who would be hit. Secondly, what it would do with quality of life and consequences for the poorest of the Republic. That is if they cared about that. Apparently, they don’t, because they are just whistling after the President and his every whims.

The people should be insulted by their MPs and their lack of understanding, their lack of concern. They should be ashamed to have this sort of people representing them. That they cannot have any of these following government bodies to do, due diligence on the amendment:

Uganda Communications Commission (UCC), National Identification and Registration Authority (NIRA), Uganda Revenue Authority (URA), Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development (MoFPED), and Ministry of Information and Communications Technology (MICT).

All of these should have delivered some sort of report and proper framework, the actual costs and the implications of these taxes on Mobile Money and Social Media Tax. However, the didn’t do that, because they don’t care.

Neither did URA or MoFPED. They just didn’t care to put in the work and show the reality of these proposals. They are just blindly following the blind, aka the President. That is what they do and people have to suffer because of it. Paying much more for service, being invoiced as long as they have the possibility to use the services. That is what the Exercise Duty does, that is what the state do to its citizens. Peace.

Uganda: The lowest paid civil servants would be hit by the Social Media Tax, up to about 20% of their total yearly salary!

You know that is wrong, when the state is issuing taxes that is insane. This is really banishing the poorest from certain aspects of life. By the time of November 2017, the lowest paid salaries for certain government employees are yearly about 250,000 shillings likes the U8 Local Government Workers. Others are the likes of U7 Primary School Teachers about 380,000 shillings. These are the lowest paid staff in and around in the Republic. Meaning this will be hit by the newly minted taxes that the state has imposed today in Parliament. This being the Excise Duty Amendment Bill 2018. These are on all different aspect of life and on needed services, products that people need, that will all become more expensive.

The reports said this about it!

Parliament has passed the Excise Duty Amendment bill 20l8 by imposing one percent tax on every mobile money transaction and 200 shillings on social media. The tax measures approved by parliament are close to 1 trillion shillings and government argues that they will help in improving the tax base of the country” (Mbarara Sun, 2018).

The approval implies that each person using platforms like WhatsApp, Facebook, Viber and Skype among others, will be subjected to a daily levy of 200 Shillings while each mobile money transaction will be subjected to a 1 percent excise duty. The government is projecting to collect 284 billion Shillings from the measures” (Open Gate FM, 30.05.2018).

There are also some that has calculated it be costing the citizen up to 70,000 shillings on a given year, as the person has to pay the 200 shillings for the use. That will happen from the 1st January 2019. If that is so. Out of the lowest salary, if your paying the total on the Social Media Tax, you will go from 250k to 180k. That is 28% of the salary paying for being on social media alone. That is the poorest of the poor, the salaries which is usually not on time and they are even not getting by. They are the ones that is closed out of the new services and places for information like the Social Media. This is shutting out the poorest from the Social Media, this is only making sure the elite and wealthy can log-on, but the rest will not afford it.

Who wants to use 20% of their salary to go on Facebook, Twitter, Viber and WhatsApp? Who wants to do that? Will people use the VPN to not show their IP Addresses to still come into the Social Media Accounts without paying for the barrier that the Republic has put forward.

This is really making sure the society and space of voices sounding disconcern on social media and in general on the internet. This is closing the web for the poorest. Taking a bargain of about 20% of their check in big swoop. I just wonder how they will enforce this and how they will monitor all accounts, all the log-ins and the grand issue of technical framework to put in place within the spectrum of 6 months too.

It is not like the same state together with the Mobile Industry was able to roll-out the registered Sim-Cards and whatnot over the last two years. It has been hectic, a charade and a mess. It hasn’t been professional or sincere, there been backpedaling and all sort of fatigue within the system. You cannot say the Sim-Card saga was smooth. Then you look into all the government organizations and the orders, which went back- and forth.

Time will tell how the state will enforce this one, this is not just adding a tax, but also the software and the addition of systems on the Mobile Phones. If they all have to be updated and get agreements for payment walls on the Social Media Apps and such. Will that also be on the Computers and whatnot? What is the legal framework that puts this in? Other than the 200 shillings per day!

We should really get people to address the 70k shillings a year possibly, that is lot of money. For some about 20% of their salary. That is just too much for browsing on their phone and looking at what Maureen made for dinner and what Steve wrote about Mao. But that is just what the National Resistance Movement (NRM) are doing.

200 shillings is really nothing, but when you take the whole piece of the puzzle collectively, just imagine all the other taxes put in this bills too. Are they taking 9 slices of the bread and leaving one behind to the taxpayer. Is that what the state is trying to do? Since they are already just on the Social Media Tax alone on the poorest civil servants and the local government workers who cannot afford to go there, because they have to decide to pay rent, food or school payments. Because when this is becoming this much of the salaries. You know just know this hurts the people in general.

This isn’t funny. This is serious. This is theft of the opportunities for the poorest in society. Peace.

Reference:

Mbarara Sun – ‘Parliament Endorses Tax On Social Media, Mobile Money’ 30.05.2018 link: http://mbararasun.com/index.php/2018/05/30/parliament-endorses-tax-on-social-media-mobile-money/

ZHLR: Fresh Clampdown on Dissent as Zim Authorities Charge Man for Undermining Mnangagwa (28.05.2018)

Opinion: Mugabe your are so lucky, so stop complaining!

Mr. Robert Gabriel Mugabe, I know your old and in advanced age, but someone have to learn you how to be silent. You should be silent and not even whistle in public. Your lucky to have your life, have a giant pension and also still keep your wealth. Your extremely lucky that the current administration and the current leadership wasn’t flogging you and taking you to court after the coup d’etat in November 2017.

Your extremely lucky, so reading that your bitching again about your life post-presidency. You better know better. You are living life and lavishly, while the ones who haven’t eaten the 37 years of rule. Are still struggling day to day, there is still problems within the state and its organizations. What you have left behind is dozens of people who don’t know where their family members are, the activists and political opponents you ordered to vanish or get rid off. They are worse off and knows nothing.

You have claimed dozens of lives, while living life of luxury, eating the best of best food, while others are awaiting donations and food relief from foreign sources. The rule of yours has destroyed the economy and even the currency. Still, you have the audacity to complain and bitch to a fellow dictator for life. How dare you?

Your lucky your not in bracelets, that your reign ended without bloodshed and without insecurity. Because you took it all and expected to get away with it all. That you could loot, celebrate and get rid of the ones standing in your way. It is insane that your living in your mansion, have your cars and owns the various estates. While the state is lacking funds and struggles to pay civil servants. When you have over the years stolen millions upon millions dollars. Which could help all the working families within the state and generate better services.

Your are lucky to keep all of that, that your not going to court every single day answering litigation’s and cases of corruptions, kidnappings and violations of human rights, because there are dozens of people who would enjoy seeing your answering for your crimes. Because you hurt so many people’s lives, you ate their plate and enjoyed yourself on others people’s hardship.

Therefore, you should be silent and pray to the almighty God, that the leadership and administration, haven’t touched you and haven’t acted upon at all. They haven’t taken away or even whisked away anything, which you have stolen during the years. You have gotten away with major crimes and not have to answer. You have been in charge of grand corruption and still breathing the free air and not being behind bars.

You are lucky, super lucky that Mnangagwa and the Lacoste didn’t do you harm. They stripped your title and your office, but have kept everything else. You are a bit to lucky, you would deserve a public trial and answer for the ills you have committed to others on your watch. That would have justice, because all the other citizens answer for their bad activity and trespassing of the law. So he should answer for that too.

Your damn lucky your not behind closed doors not seeing or feeling the sun, not hearing the rain or the thunder. But being free at the Blue Roof and enjoying retirement in wealth. Other people wouldn’t get that well off after what you have done and did.

So please. Do yourself a favor. Become silent and enjoy it. Your bitching isn’t doing any good. It is just making more people more eager to retaliate and your don’t want to a prison guards bitch do you?

No, I didn’t think so. Peace.

Zimbabwe: Terence Mukupe releases a ‘No Apology’ (26.05.2018)

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