A faction of the Copyright Society of Nigeria (COSON) says the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) should probe Tony Okoroji, its factional chairman, in the interest of Nigerian artistes.

The power tussle between Tony Okoroji and his successor, Efe Omoregbe, for the position of chairman has lasted six months.

The ongoing COSON crisis led to the suspension of the organisation’s operating licence.

In a statement issued on Wednesday at a stakeholders forum in Lagos, the society demanded action from the Nigeria Copyright Commission, the Nigeria Police, and the EFCC, describing the situation as a “matter of urgency”.

“Okoroji’s access to, and abuse of funds belonging to members continue to embolden and empower him in the continued disregard for constituted authority, abuse of court processes, and war of attrition against perceived enemies,” the statement read.

“Stakeholders, therefore, call on the Nigeria Copyright Commission to rise up to the occasion and enforce compliance as a matter of urgency. We demand affirmative action now.

“Tony Okoroji has bluntly refused to accept the vote of no confidence passed by his colleagues on the board. He has refused to respond to the inquiry of key right owners.

“Tony has instead, maintained a stranglehold on the reins at COSON and launching a legal and media war against any and every dissenting voice using the apparatus and of course, funds of right owners whose royalties the directors are duty-bound to protect.”

COSON said Nigeria, which is a bigger music market, should be reporting larger figures than South Africa Music Rights Organisation and Music Copyright Society of Kenya, which reported $9.8 billion and $20 million in royalty earnings respectively.

Nigeria reported $1.17 million.



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