Chairman, Copyright Society of Nigeria (COSON), Chief Tony Okoroji has said that 2018 will be a year of solid growth in the Nigerian creative industry. In his New Year message to the industry, Chief Okoroji asked practitioners and investors in the industry not to relent in professionalizing their activities and ensuring that better value is placed on Nigeria’s creative products so that the industry can contribute more meaningfully to the growth of the Nigerian economy.
In the words of Chief Okoroji, “Though the terrain is tough, we cannot afford to lose hope. Those of us charged with providing leadership for the industry cannot be Lilly- livered or cowardly. We must earn the confidence reposed in us. We cannot afford just to be talkers. We must be doers”,
According to Okoroji, his optimismin the strong possibilities in the industry in the new year is based on the fact that the government appears finally to understand the huge potentials of the creative sector and has shown the willingness to effectively activate a number of initiatives that were scandalously ignored in the oil boom days.
According to the former president of PMAN, “In the second half of 2017, we began a significant engagement with the Honorable Minister of Information & Culture on several initiatives which I believe will remove the obstacles towards sustainable growth in the industry. These initiatives are in the areas of access to funds, anti-piracy activities, legislative frame work, the private copy levy scheme, capacity building, collective management, etc. In 2018, we will vigorously follow up on the work we began last year to ensure that they have measurable positive impacton the lives of practitioners in the Nigerian creative industry”
Chief Okoroji assured all members of COSON that the organization will robustly protect their interests in 2018 and would work very hard towards earning and distributing more royalties to the members. The Chairman vowed to do everything in his power to make sure that COSONcontinues to be an exemplary Nigerian organization, maintaining complete transparency and accountability and safeguarding the culture of respect for intellectual property rights which it has vigorously promoted in Nigeria.
Chief Okoroji also said that 2018 has to be the year in which the Private Copy Levy scheme is finally activated. According to him, the activation will bring a new stream of income to musicians, movie makers, authors and publishers in Nigeria.
He warned that with the setting up of the COSON Rapid Response Legal Team made up of eight crack Intellectual Property law firms with the mandate to go after any copyright royalty defaulter, the environment has changed significantly and anyone wishing to dodge his music copyright royalty obligations in 2018 will face severe consequences.