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No, Kenyan government has not introduced taxes based on marital status, number of children and sexual orientation

IN SHORT: Doctored videos are increasingly circulating on TikTok in Kenya. One example is this edited news broadcast announcing new taxes for Kenyans based on their marital status, number of children and sexual orientation.

A video posted on TikTok in November 2023 supposedly shows a clip from a TV news broadcast announcing that the Kenyan government will start taxing Kenyans based on their marital status, number of children and sexual orientation.

The video features the logo of national television channel NTV Kenya and the station's anchor and editor Dann Mwangi.

“The government of Kenya has said, using the last census, people will be taxed as follows,” the voiceover in the video says.

It then lists the new tax amounts for each category to be levied per month. According to the video, the taxes, ranging from “600” for “married” to “1,500” for “same gender”, will be introduced from 20 February 2024.  

It does not say in what currency these taxes will be collected and includes a compilation of clips. Some of the clips show Kenya’s president William Ruto at various events.

Ruto has embarked on a major and at times unpopular drive to raise taxes, since taking office in September 2022. 

Claims that Ruto has introduced taxes based on marital status and the number of children one has have gained traction in late 2023. Many TikTok users appear to believe the claims to be true. 

The claim has been posted on TikTok here, here and here. But is it true, and did NTV Kenya report it?


Ignore edited video

Africa Check searched for this news on Kenyan media platforms and came up empty. 

Such a development would have been widely reported in the Kenyan media, as taxes have been a much-discussed issue in the country since Ruto took office. 

A closer look at one of the clips shows that the anchor’s lip movement is not in sync with the voiceover. 

Using the text at the beginning of the video – “NTV Weekend edition” – and the presenters’ clothes, Africa Check searched through NTV’s Facebook page and YouTube channel

We found the original video showing the first frame of Mwangi, which was posted by NTV Kenya’s Facebook page on 31 March 2023. It was also posted on the station’s YouTube channel.

The broadcast had nothing to do with the introduction of new taxes in Kenya. It was about a police officer who was caught on tape using brutal force against journalists during anti-government protests in March.

The video has been doctored to include false information. An audio overlay has been added.

Africa Check has previously debunked a similarly edited video.

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