The Copyright Society of Nigeria, (COSON), on Tuesday, lost the bid to stop the Musical Copyright Society of Nigeria, (MCSN), from collecting music royalties on behalf of artistes.
Justice Ibrahim Buba of a Federal High Court sitting in Lagos in dismissing the action declared that the MCSN has the right on Collective Management Organisation (CMO) for musical works and sound recordings in Nigeria based on a valid directive from Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC).
In his judgment in the suit filed by the Copyright Society of Nigeria (COSON) Limited, seeking to stop MCSN from operating as a CMO, Justice Buba stated that MCSN was validly authorised by the NCC to collect royalties on behalf of artists.
The judge also ruled that contrary to COSON’s claim, the NCC is authorised to approve more than one CMO to collect royalties for artists.
The court equally maintained that the Attorney-General of the Federation, AGF, and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami (SAN), lawfully directed the NCC to withdraw the cases it filed against the MCSN.
The judge, therefore, dismissed for want of merit, COSON’s entire suit against the first defendant MCSN, second defendant NCC and the third defendant, the AGF.
Justice Buba also stated that he would report counsel to MCSN, Romeo Eze Michael, to the Legal Practitioners’ Disciplinary Committee (LPDC), for alleged gross abuse of court process.
Micheal had filed an application seeking to stall the judgment, but Justice Buba ruled against the motion, describing it as a ploy to arrest the day’s business.
COSON instituted the action designated FHC/L/CS/1259/2017 in 2017, where it prayed for a declaration that NCC failed to comply with Section 39(2) (d) of the Copyright Act 2004 and Copyright (CMO) Regulations 2007 when it registered MCSN.
The suit also requested amongst other things, a perpetual injunction restraining NCC from approving MCSN as a CMO.AX