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KFCB has no role licensing video content: Kenya Film Commission Chair

Kenya Film Commission Chairperson, Chris Foot.

NAIROBI, Kenya, May 25 – Confusion lingers around the film industry on who has the mandate to issue online video content license.

In an interview with Capital Business, Kenya Film Commission Chairperson, Chris Foot, says it is the work of the Director of Film Services at the Ministry of Information Communication and Technology to issue licenses.

This comes after the Kenya Film Classification Board (KFCB) gave a notice that they would be implementing film regulations that would require anyone shooting a film for public consumption in Kenya to acquire a license.

The rules by KFCB would require video publishers to pay an annual registration fee of Sh12,000 and Sh5,000 for every video produced as long as it is under 40 minutes and Sh1,000 for every day you take shooting the video.

After production is complete, one is supposed to send the video to KFCB for approval before publishing. Failure to do this the Board had warned would attract a fine not exceeding Sh100,000 or imprisonment of a term not exceeding five years or both.

Following public outcry, the Board changed its stance and claimed it was quoted out of context.

KFCB also banned a local film titled ‘Rafiki’ due to it homosexual theme, a move KFC says is counterproductive.

“We need to sit down and discuss this issue; we are also concerned about the ongoing bans of films, due to ‘morality’. So how about those movies that showcase terrorism? theft? Aren’t these moral issues? I am having a hard time selling Kenya as a film destination with this kind of issues,“ Foot told Capital Business.

The Board’s Chief Executive Officer Ezekiel Mutua said the film should not be distributed; exhibited or broadcast anywhere in the country since it will be a breach of the law because it contains homosexual scenes.

“We will continue to support the film; it did not have any pornographic scenes, It’s the first Kenyan film to be screened at Cannes film festival this year,” Foot says.

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Foot has also revealed that there is an uneasy relationship between KFC and the classification board but has said they are open to dialogue to solve the issues affecting the sector.

He says the sector is also losing a lot to South Africa which has a tax rebate of 35 percent for filmmakers. a

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