University Students: We Can't Afford New Social Media Tax

2079 Views Kampala, Uganda

In short
The students further say they will be negatively impacted by the removal of the social media bundles which were cheaper than usual internet costs.

University students have criticized the new social media tax, saying that they can't afford the tax. 

A section of students told Uganda Radio Network that the new tax will increase the cost of the internet that they use for academic research and social media platforms for coordination and engagement. They further say they can't afford the 200 shillings daily fee. 

The students further say they will be negatively impacted by the removal of the social media bundles which were cheaper than usual internet costs.

For instance, a student would spend only 200 shillings daily to purchase a social bundle to access Facebook, Twitter, Instagram as well as other numerous social networking platforms.

However, they will now be required to pay 200 shillings daily tax and then also buy internet bundles.
Kyambogo University Guild President, German Amanya says that many students will be locked out social media platforms. He further says these platforms were used by students for mobilisation. 

//Cue in: "A lot of people...
Cue out: …from the 200 shillings."//
Gilbert Asasira, says while it is important to appreciate that citizens must pay tax, he questions the spirit in which the tax was introduced. He argues that it targets crippling young people who were using social media as a means of earning through marketing their produce and merchandise. 

/Cue in: "Like Church Hill said…
Cue out: …to the middle-income status."//

Samuel Obedgiu, a student leader at Makerere University wants the University management to improve on the Wi-Fi connections in order for the students to enable communication among the students' fraternity. 

Obedgiu says 6,000 shillings Social Media tax is a lot of money for a student. 

//Cue in: "I believe you know…

Cue out: …it's a very serious one."//

Makerere University Guild President Papa Were Salim says the majority of students are likely to go off social media since they might not be willing to sacrifice their money into a tax. This he says will limit communication and flow of information among university students.
//Cue in: "It is very unfortunate…
Cue out: …affected as students."//


About the author

Davidson Ndyabahika
Davidson Ndyabahika is a Journalism major from Makerere University and is passionate about investigative and data journalism with special interest in feature story telling.

He has gone through digital and multi-media training both at Ultimate Multimedia Consult, and has attended Data Journalism Sessions at ACME to enrich his capacity in data journalism.

Davidson has previously freelanced with The Campus Times, The Observer, Chimp reports and URN. He is currently reporting under Education. He is also passionate about reporting on environment, health, crime and political satire writing.

Follow him on Twitter: @dndyaba