Connect to Social Media and Get Taxed, Says Uganda

April 13, 2018 Taxation in Uganda

social media tax ugandaKAMPALA – Uganda’s government wants to anyone who uses social media platforms, as such technology is used primarily for gossip.

The government of Uganda is looking to enact a new tax on the use of social media on mobile devices, a move which is claimed will plug budgetary gaps, even though some are claiming it’s actually aimed at quashing dissent among taxpayers.

The new tax would be levied at a rate of UGX 100 per day per SIM card, if that SIM card is used to connect to a social media service.

The proposed tax not only encapsulates connections to traditional social media platforms such as Facebook, but also extends to platforms used primarily for communication, such as WhatsApp, Skype, and Viber.

President Yoweri Museveni claimed that the social platforms are used primarily for lugambo, which translates roughly to gossip.

Local taxpayers have not shown significant support for the proposal, saying that the tax is “diversionary, deceptive, injurious to individual freedoms and burdensome”.

This is not the first time that the government of Uganda have levied taxes on mobile technology, as it recently introduced a 1 percent tax on all deposits and withdrawals made on mobile money platforms.