Copyright Society of Malawi (Cosoma) has disbursed K260,988, 372.51 in blank media levy for the period of July to December 2021. The copyright body started the distribution process on March 31 2022.
According to a document that Arts and Culture has seen, the amount is for 6,418 works and has benefitted 2,709 artists.
The document also indicates that from K1,000 to K200,000 the beneficiaries are 2,342; K201,000 to K400,000 (231), K401,000 to K600,000 (83); K601,000 to K800,000 (37), K801,000 to K1 million (nine); whereas K1 million to K1.5 million the beneficiaries are seven.
Out of the K260, 988,372.51 which has been disbursed, K5.9 million has been given to 40 fallen artists with no artist in the K1 million to K1.5 million and K801, 000 to K1 million brackets.
Cosoma Head of Documentation and Distribution Shadrick Kumtengo said there was a great improvement in the distribution process according to statistics.
“Looking at the previous statistics, we started with K120 million, K180 million and then K224 million and now we have distributed K260 million; so, there are improvements as regards the graph and the number of beneficiaries is increasing and they are getting substantial amounts,” Kumtengo said.
He, however, could not be drawn to say which musician have dominated this time around. In the period from July to December 2020, musicians Elias Samson Missi, popularly known as Atoht Manje, Kelly Kambwiri (Kell Kay) and Yamikani Chikwawe (Saint) dominated the blank media levy.
“We have been having issues with some artists not being comfortable with disclosure of their amounts. They don’t want it to be made public,” Kumtengo said.
He said artists need to benefit from their sweat “and this is what we want”.
Malawi Revenue Authority and Cosoma resumed collection of a levy on media storage devices from February 2020.
Musicians Union of Malawi President Gloria Manong’a said more artists are benefitting but appealed to Cosoma to continue holding sensitisation meetings to share information and enlighten artists.
“This is motivating. Let me also appeal to fellow artists to register their works so that they should be in the system,” Manong’a said.