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PMAN Calls On NCC To Revoke COSON’s Operating License

By Daniel Anazia 28 March 2020   |   3:15 am

The Performing Musicians Employers Association of Nigeria (PMAN), has called on the Nigeria Copyright Commission (NCC) to revoke the license of Copyright Society Of Nigeria (COSON), a member-based, not-for-profit organisation made up of music creators – songwriters, composers, publishers, performers and owners of sound recordings, with immediate effect.

In a statement signed and issued by PMAN President, Pretty Okafor, PMAN, as the trade union responsible for the welfare of musicians in Nigeria, deem it necessary to state its position on the long-drawn COSON crisis. He stated that the call for the license revocation is line with its mandate to protect the rights of its members, who are a stakeholder of COSON.

He noted that while Nigerian right holders continue to suffer incalculable losses, COSON has deployed myriad tactics in a desperate attempt to dodge the independent audit mandated by NCC and other key stakeholders in the music industry, while still operating and parading itself illegally as a licensed CMO.

“PMAN, as a founding pillar of COSON and a key promoter of the interest of Nigeria musicians has in time past called on Chief Tony Okoroji to summon the courage to face the probe and allow the independent audit vindicate him and his fellow accused officers of the society.

“A recent report from the auditing firm, KPMG revealed that COSON collected over N1.1 billion in royalty and licensing fees from users in 2017, but claimed it only distributed N225 million to holders, while over N800 million is unaccounted for. This is totally unacceptable.

“These desperate antics and twisted logic provide terrible optics for the entire industry, particularly at a time when Nigerian music is gaining global mainstream penetration,” the statement read in parts.

Okafor further stated that the NCC will do well also to remind all stakeholders that it remains a criminal offence to operate as a collective management organisation in Nigeria without a valid licence.

He added the PMAN team under his leadership is currently engaging all stakeholders in the music industry to align the industry’s resolve on how to deal with the aftermath of the revocation of COSON’s license.

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