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Raila Pays Artists Ksh500K For Using Songs In Presidential Campaigns

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Azimio la Umoja-One Kenya coalition flag bearer Raila Odinga has become the first presidential candidate to pay license fees to the Music Copyright Society of Kenya (MCSK) for music that will be prominent during his campaigns.

Raila’s youngest daughter Winnie Odinga, on his behalf, paid Ksh562,500 to the MCSK through Senior Licensing Officer David Kiragu, whom she met over the weekend.

MCSK added that the license will see Raila freely use any local and international music of his choice, taking to full throttle his campaigns ahead of the August 9, 2022, general elections.

“It’s gratifying to see that presidential candidates are complying with the copyright law by paying for music used in their political campaigns,” MCSK confirmed.

“We thank Winnie and the entire Raila Odinga’s presidential team for this gesture and urge other political candidates to emulate them by making payments for the use of copyrighted musical works in their campaigns.”

Raila is the only candidate to comply with the MCSK laws and adheres to Section 38 (c) of the Kenya Copyright Act 2021.

“Any person who causes a literary or musical work, an audio-visual work or a sound recording, to be performed in public at a time when copyright subsists in such work or sound recording and where such performances is an infringement of that copyright, shall be guilty of an offence,” states the Act, whose violation draws a Ksh500,000 fine or four years imprisonment, or both.

Music has been used more often to entice young Kenyans into voting for their preferred politicians in the 2022 General Elections owing to their ability to connect with them on an emotional scale.

Raila released his debut song as well as its music video on Tuesday, February 15, a rendition of veteran Luhya singer Emmanuel Musindi’s Leo ni Leo song, with the star also featuring as the main stage act.

Musindi’s song has long been touted as the official campaign song, having been a constant feature in Raila’s campaign rallies.

His opponent, Deputy President William Ruto of the United Democratic Alliance (UDA) has also been on the musical trail.

However, his rendition of the famous Sipangwingwi track by musician Exray Taniua, Trio Mio and Ssaru, was a direct response to the National Cohesion and Integration Commission (NCIC)’s move to blacklist Hatupangwingwi as hate speech.

Deputy President William Ruto and Exray Taniua dancing to the Hatupangwingwi song. /WILLIAM RUTO.TWITTER

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Marvin Chege
About author: Digital journalist and managing director with a passion for writing captivating stories. Marvin is a young scribe, a social media, sports, gaming junkie and realist who specialises in viral news, multimedia and investigative storytelling.

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