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Fabian accuses marketer of copyright breach

By FEMI SALAWU
Fabian
Fabian

The incessant face-off between musicians and marketers is currently raising dust between an upcoming gospel musician, Fabian Nwafor and the Idumota, Lagos-based, Cleemac Music Limited owned by one Mikky Nweze.

Nwafor, in a petition to the National Copyright Commission and Inspector General of Police, has alleged copyright infringement on his album entitled : Oba, was allegedly marketed by Cleemac Music Limited without any formal agreement.

Narrating how the once promising relationship with the marketer began, the upcoming artiste said: “Before we met, I already had six tracks and a video, for which I have invested about N2million since 2005 sourced from goodwill of friends, relations and honorariums. I was going to have a meeting with a marketer but on getting to the recording studio, which I normally use, I was referred to Mr. Mikky Nweze, an Idumota marketer, who listened to my music and invited me to his office.”

“We met the following week and he requested to listen to the full album. He then suggested that I added some other songs and I booked a session at my favourite studio but he suggested that I use his preferred studio.”
However, Nwafor said Nweze began to show his real colours when he asked for the contract papers from the latter, “Each time I asked, he kept assuring me that he had it all figured. I felt he was God sent, he even told me that he was a pastor with RCCG. But when I raised the issue of contract papers, he became evasive. I paid for three sessions at N12, 000 each and he contributed with the payment for two instrumentalists and the studio engineer at N3, 000 each.”
“Mr Nweze was only able to bring the contract forms when he had printed about 1000 pieces of posters and 2, 000 pieces of CD jackets. In the contract, he stated that he wanted to market the album but he was referring to the CD, cassette and videos.

We requested more details on the contract and he said that he would pay N5 per CD and was not willing to put anything down. Everything was shrouded in darkeness, so we pulled out.”
“We tried all entreaties to resolve this issue amicably only to claim now that he owns three songs that were added and has a stake in the music. He realized that I am a young man and I don't have the money to fight him hence he is now boasting that we should go to court.

On July 29, I woke up and saw a text message from him saying 'congratulations our music Oba has been released to the market today by me, Micky'.”
“He later resorted to blackmail when he saw that I was not playing ball with him. In another text message he said: 'Do you understand how dangerous it is, starting your carrier this way with self-orchestrated crisis.”

But when contacted on phone, Mr Nweze, who admitted marketing the music CD denied the allegations.
The marketer, who, we gathered is visually impaired said: “It is a planted lie. He has once made the same allegations in a national daily and I am not ready to discuss the issue on the pages of newspapers. Whenever I am ready, we will meet in court.”
When probed further , he banged the phone on this reporter.
A source at the National Copyright Commission, however, confirmed that the petition had been received and is being investigated.