The Copyright Society of Nigeria (COSON) Limited has slammed N105,848,000 suit on Young Shall Grow Motors Limited, PM News reports
The transport company is being sued for allegedly playing the music of artistes covered by COSON without permission.
COSON said it has repeatedly, through several letters and demand notices, requested Young Shall Grow Motors Limited to obtain appropriate licenses and pay the requisite royalties for the musical works and sound recording used, reproduced, publicly performed and communicated to the public twenty four hours every day in its vehicles and restaurants at its various terminals in Lagos and nationwide but refused to do so.
”As a result of the refusal of the defendant to pay royalties for the musical works and sound recordings in its operations, the Government of Federal Republic of Nigeria has been denied and has lost several millions of Naira being value Added Tax (VAT) and other taxable income accruable to the Government from the royalties”, COSON’s lawyers said in court.
In an amended statement of claim filed before a Federal high court in Lagos, by two Lagos lawyers, Justin Ige and Seun Omotoba, it was alleged that Copyright Society of Nigeria Limited, a company guaranteed under the Company and allied Matters and approved by the Nigeria Copyright commission as a collective management organization has entered into various reciprocal representation agreements giving it the mandate to license the public performance of a worldwide music repertoire, major Nigerian artists and other world notable artists.
The plaintiff averred further that it has entered into copyright licensing agreements with various transport services in Nigeria who are supposed to pay royalties for using music in their facilities.
COSON is therefore claiming the sum of N85,848,000, being the amount due to the plaintiff from the defendant as royalties for the period 2014 to 2017 as computed and detailed in the particulars of royalties by the defendant.
It is also claiming interest on the said sum at the rate of 21 percent per annum from the commencement of this action until judgement and 12% thereafter until final liquidation.
General and exemplary damages in the sum of N20 million.
COSON is also seeking an order restraining the defendant and its agents from the unauthorized performance and infringement of the copyright of the musical works or sound recordings belonging to the plaintiff, its members, affiliates and assignors.