At the urging of Uganda's corrupt dictator Yoweri Museveni, the Ugandan parliament has enacted legislation imposing a daily tax on anyone using social media platforms; Museveni said the measure would curb "gossip," while Matia Kasaija claimed it would fund security and electrification efforts.
The country has no plan for enforcing the tax, but that doesn't make it benign -- failure to pay the tax will simply become yet another pretense for harassing, fining, surveilling, searching and jailing people who come into disfavor with the regime, already notorious for its dismal human rights record.
The tax will come into effect on June 1st, imposing a 200 shilling ($0.05) levy per day on those who use social media platforms, but it’s unclear how it will be enforced. About 17 million people, or 41 percent of Uganda’s total population, use the internet, and there doesn’t seem to be a definitive plan on monitoring how and when social media sites are accessed. According to the BBC, at least one ISP has doubts about the law’s enforcement.
Uganda passes tax law on social media users to curb ‘gossiping’ online
[Dani Deahl/The Verge]
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