Ghen Ghen: Paul Play Dairo Sues Etisalat N200m For Copyright Infringement

Nigerian music icon and multiple award-winning
artiste, Paul Play Dairo, has dragged a
telecommunications service provider, Etisalat,
before a Federal High Court in Lagos for allegedly
infringing on his copyright.
The ‘Angel of My Life’ crooner asked Justice C.J.
Aneke to compel Etisalat to pay him N200m for
making use of his 2009 hit-track, “Mosorire”
without having obtained his authorisation.
His grouse with the defendants stemmed from
the alleged use of the track “Mosorire” in the
defendant’s popular television reality show,
tagged, “Nigerian Idol” for two consecutive years
without paying him. Joined with Etisalat in the
suit marked FHC/CS/581/2014 is one Optima
Media Group.
Paul Play, in the affidavit filed in support of his
suit and deposed to by himself, averred that, “I
am the copyright owner of the work named and
tagged “Mosorire”, contained in my repertoire,
exclusively for the jurisdiction of Nigeria and the
authority or permission to exploit such work can
only be obtained from me.
“However, the defendants being an organiser of a
television reality show tagged, “Nigerian Idol”
caused the use, adaptation and deployment of
my said work titled, “Mosorire” on the said show
without my consent, and which was broadcast to
several millions of television viewers throughout
the Federal Republic of Nigeria and the rest of
Africa for 2012 and 2013 editions.”
The artiste said the defendants particularly
infringed on his copyright when they allowed one
of the contestants on the show to reproduce and
perform his song in the glare of the whole nation
and beyond.
Paul Play averred that as a singer and composer,
he was entitled to an annual fee of N100m on the
said track, as commensurate with his effort in
putting the work together.
He however averred that having made use of his
work without obtaining permission from him, the
defendants had caused him loss of income while
“they have made gains and improved on their
own brand image.”
The artiste therefore sought a declaration of the
court “that the act of adaptation, deployment,
public performance and exploitation of his
musical work titled “Mosorire” by the defendants
without the plaintiff’s prior consent, authorisation
or permission constitutes an infringement of the
plaintiff’s copyright, as guaranteed by the
Copyright Act, Cap C28, Laws of the Federal
Republic of Nigeria, 2004 and sections 6 (6) (b)
and 44 of the 1999 Constitution.”
Source: olosho360

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