ABUJA WAHALA: WHY YOU SHOULD MOVE BACK TO LAGOS
I find it absolutely necessary to show my gratitude to you over your unending and resilient struggle for national development. All your activities towards national development are glaring and cannot be overemphasized. I say thank you.
Firstly, I will like to use this medium to congratulate you on your recent Charly Boy Show-live held in Abuja entitled, Battle of the Gifted. It was indeed, a battle, having followed the event on TV and the Internet since I was not able to make the show. Once again, thank you for empowering some of the Nigerian youth that have been ridiculed by our leaders who have now left them in the shame of joblessness. You are indeed, a great man. I can't imagine what the lives of those youth would have been in the next two to three years if not for your selfless service to humanity.
Today, I'm writing to inform you that I'm not oblivious of your numerous activities in recent times; most of which have been featured in different newspapers with both ugly and beautiful stories to match; some of the stories would have tarnished your good image if not for people like us who know so much about you. I mean those of us who can best be considered as your ardent fans. Anyway, that's the life of a celebrity, but the most shocking of the entire newspaper and tabloid gist that came across my table, in relation to your person, was the one that categorically, but unsubstantially claimed that you were arrested in Abuja for protesting what you considered the highest point of injustice that has crept into the entertainment industry. Yes, I heard about the protest and even watched it live on Africa Independent Television (AIT), but never heard about your arrest until I picked up one of the dailies a few days after the protest and was shocked with the story that you had been arrested and questioned for taking the laws into your hands. But how true was that story any way?
It never really took me longer than few hours of grumbling on why you should be arrested for protesting with many other aggrieved artistes who saw the need to protest against the obnoxious law of the Nigerian Copyrights Commission (NCC), before it was uncovered that the sponsored story was far from the truth. So I ask, why the hullabaloo about your arrest in the first place? Could it be that you embarked on a violent and unjustified rally against the Director General of NCC, or due to the singular reason that you refused to remain silent while being confronted by an overwhelming injustice? I tried to figure out why anybody with his right frame of mind could construct such an empty lie of arrest and expect someone like me to believe him or her. Due to the numerous questions begging for answers, my interest in the case among NCC, Musical Copyright Society of Nigeria (MCSN) and Copyright Society of Nigeria (COSON) got stirred up and since then, I have been so keen on any of such related issues that comes across my table through the pages of newspapers and magazines.
Initially, I was ignorant of the subject of the protest, only that I like to join you in whatever you frown or smile at, even without the basic understanding of what you tend to achieve. Of course, that has been my stupidity over the years. I think I should call myself a coward. So, I weighed the issue again and again to get myself off the hook of the magnetic force that pulls me towards you.
By so doing, I had to pay particular attention to newspaper publication on the matter, and here I'm today affirming that I'm not satisfied with the action and manner with which the NCC/COSON case is being handled. I think, you have not been so proactive enough if compared to the enormity and the weight of the matter in the entertainment industry; and that is why I have seen the obvious need why you should get back to Lagos, the home of activism and get rid of the calm and gentle Abuja character that you are beginning to cultivate in the Charly Boy philosophy. Sir, put me right if it is wrong to state that your philosophy is not in-tandem with liberal approach to things. It will be a sell-out if you resort to handling issues of injustice, as it is the case in the entertainment industry today, without the application of radicalism, which is synonymous with the brand Charly Boy.
Sir, I was shocked that a case of this magnitude, where everything leading to the destruction of the industry is involved, has been treated with levity, calmness and placidness. It's like robbing one's palm on a stubborn head. From my research on what is going on in the industry, I understand that monopoly has been enforced on the Nigerian artistes by some few selfish individuals who feel that the fate of Nigerian artistes should rather be in their hands. I call them demigods. Having examined your calm and philosophical approach to this matter, I searched further to know why you have been so calm with Adebambo Adewopo. The more I try to find out why you have been so patient with these people, the more I gather information on this matter.
Lately, I gathered that Copyright Societies all over the world have more than two to eight CMOs. One could reference Britain, Canada, France, Brazil, USA, Ireland and a host of other African countries; so I wonder where some people got this theory of monopoly from. I see this theory as the only option left to stripe the Nigeria creators their benefits, as they will have no other option but to receive pea-nuts from one CMO. The question that I will like to ask you, if possible, some of the allies of the DG, NCC and other 'blind' creators that have decided to sell their rights because they eat from Adewopo's palm today, is whether the Nigerian Copyright Commission has acquired a different economic policy that contradicts the all embracing liberalism. Too bad, too bad; Mr. Charles Oputa for keeping quiet this long.
When I came across the catchy headline that the Attorney General, Mohammed Adoke, (SAN), will be dealing with the case, no, resolving it as soon as he returns from his trip, I felt relieved that at least, the fate of the Nigerian creators cannot be hung in the air for long. But I was disappointed when he returned and asked MCSN and COSON to devise a way of reconciling their differences within 90 days. I see some bureaucratic element in this. C.B, I will like to ask, do we wait for complete 90 days before the fate of Nigerian creators is decided? I don't expect silence from you in all these rubbish. I don't expect silence from MCSN and CCIPO. My cry is that the best hands that could better manage the proceeds of these creators have been deprived of their rights, especially MCSN, which you belong.
However, I blame your calm and extreme patience in this matter on your movement from Lagos to Abuja. I think you should begin to do it the 'Lagos way' before these people overtake us finally, especially, as we move into the election period. Alternatively, you have to move back to Lagos, where some of us are willing and ready to 'ginger your swagger.'
Sir, I beg your patience with me, if I have been so vehement in this letter, it's simply because you have refused to go on your kneels, like another person, who allegedly swallowed his pride before the Attorney General and was purportedly rolling on the floor of the AGF's office alongside his cronies, pleading that the status quo be maintained, and you have, at the same time, refused to apply the Charly Boy 'gutter-tactics,' which you have been identified with in matters, like this since I became a man, hence my confusion and this calls for your return to EKO.
- DGR8T ADOYI