Ugandans who use the internet messaging service WhatsApp will be charged a daily tax of 200 shillings ($0.05; £0.04) after parliament approved a controversial new law on Wednesday.
It comes into force on 1 July.
Mobile money transactions will also be taxed, with a 1% levy on the total value of each transaction.
At least three MPs criticised the new rules as “double taxation”, according to the privately-owned Daily Monitor newspaper.
Kyaddondo East MP Robert Kyaggulanyi, aka Bobi Wine – as well as Joshua Anywarach and Silas Aogon of Kumi Municipality – said that because users access WhatsApp through taxed airtime, an additional tax would be an infringement on users’ rights.
Kasanda North MP Patrick Nsamba of the ruling party reportedly said:
“It is very easy for an MP to say that 1% is little money, but to people who earn less than a dollar a day, it is going to break their backs.”