As Ugandans struggle to pay over the top tax (OTT), Parliament has hired MTN Uganda to provide 5GB monthly bundles for each Member of Parliament (MP).
As part of widening the country’s tax base this financial year, government introduced social media and mobile money tax where Social media platforms such as WhatsApp, Twitter, Facebook, You Tube, Viber and Skype among others subjected to a daily levy of Shs200.
Since then, the tax sparked off protests with various activists including MPs, calling on government to scrap it, however their plea hit a snug.
After the passing the law, State Minister of Finance, Planning and Economic Development, David Bahati, said, “ I don’t think Shs70, 000 a year for Social Media Tax is unreasonable.”
Obongi County MP, Kaps Fungaroo, called for Parliament to intervene after they failed to access social media platforms on their iPads due to rigidities from the service provider.
Upon that, Parliamentary Commission recently embarked on a bidding process to identify the best service provider to provide mobile data and OTT tax for mobile computing devices for MPs.
According to bide notice that was released on May 2, 2019, MTN outcompeted Airtel Uganda Limited and Africel Uganda Limited. The notice shows that MTN will provide 5GB monthly bundle at a cost of Shs30, 000 and Shs6000 OTT tax for every legislator’s internet devices.
Therefore a total of Shs 16,560,000 will be spent on mobile data and OTT tax payment for the 460 MPs for the 460 MPs iPad that were procured at a cost of US$563,000.