The nation’s collective management organisation for musical works and sound recordings, Copyright Society of Nigeria (COSON), has announced plans to hold a stakeholders forum for copyright owners in the Southeast and Southsouth states.
The forum, holding at the main hall of Rockview Hotel, Owerri, on February 16, is expected to be attended by top artistes, songwriters, composers, music publishers, performers, record companies, broadcast stations, hotels, night clubs, restaurants and transport companies from Imo, Abia, Anambra, Ebonyi, Enugu, Rivers, Bayelsa, Akwa Ibom, Delta and Cross River states.
According to Chairman of COSON Chief Tony Okoroji, “the messages we are getting from Owerri suggest that there is great expectation. We are bringing together diverse groups to chart a new course for Nigerian entertainment. The copyright revolution we have begun must spread so that we can create new jobs for the many young people who are unemployed in Nigeria and ensure that the environment is right for investment in the creative industries. Those who think we are bold have not seen anything yet. COSON is going to even be bolder in 2016.”
Corroborating Okoroji’s thoughts, COSON General Manager, Mr. Chinedu Chukwuji said: “We are leaving no stone unturned in putting together a first class event in Owerri. The successes of our previous stakeholders’ events are indicative that we are making progress especially with the recent successful hosting of the Nigerian Digital Music Summit in Lagos. I am confident that stakeholders across the country are willing to make the necessary sacrifice to make the process work. We are indeed looking forward to the Owerri Forum.” Few weeks ago, the Edo Chapter of the Performing Musicians Association of Nigeria (PMAN) alleged that COSON has not been transparent in the distribution of royalties collected on behalf of artistes.
The state Chairman of the association, Maleke Idowu, stated this when he led other leaders and members of the union on a courtesy visit to the secretariat of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), noting that PMAN has petitioned the state House of Assembly on the matter. The society had, on December 15, 2015, approved the distribution of N140 million in royalties to members and affiliates. The unanimous approval of the proposed distribution took place at the Extra-Ordinary General Meeting (EGM) of COSON held at the Oranmiyan Hall, Lagos Airport Hotel, Ikeja. Following the approval, several members of COSON at the venue confirmed that shortly after the approval, they received alerts from their banks confirming that their royalties had been paid.
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