• It’s illegal – Efe Omorogbe
The Copyright Society of Nigeria (COSON) held its 8th Annual General Meeting (AGM) on Thursday at Lagos Sheraton Hotel, Ikeja, Lagos.
Present at the event where new board members were elected were top artistes including Pa Chris Ajilo, Sir Shina Peters, Sir Victor Uwaifo, and Kenny St. Best, among others.
Speaking on the occasion, Tony Okoroji, chairman, COSON, said: “For the past eight years, we have consistently held our AGM in May and audited all our financial accounts in line with world best practices and in line with NCC directive. When we met in December, the sum of over N200 million was approved for royalties, and as I speak to you, members have been credited.
“For the first time in the history of Nigeria, the entertainment industry has a place to call its own, the magnificent COSON House was built without a loan or grant from government or any corporate body. This edifice belongs to Nigerian artistes because it was through their sweat that the building was erected. If anybody tells you that nothing is working in Nigeria, tell them that COSON is working.
“Lately, there have been several attempts to destabilise COSON by some parties who are driven by greed and blinded by their inordinate ambitions but they have failed and they will always fail because COSON has come to stay.”
However, reacting to the Annual General Meeting, artiste manager and aggrieved COSON board member, Efe Omorogbe, described it as “illegal”. According to him, the AGM “cannot be called by a sacked chairman, an illegal board of handpicked directors and executed by a General Manager who is under indefinite suspension.”
Commenting further, Omorogbe said: “As directed by the regulator, Nigerian Copyright Commission, in its February 19, 2018 letter addressed to management, a secretary should be appointed to prepare for the AGM within a 60-day period. This and other directives have been flouted in a desperate bid to perpetuate the illegality of Tony Okoroji’s purported reinstatement and to avoid due diligence probe by way of a full forensic audit of accounts of COSON. Okoroji does not have legal authority to call a COSON AGM.”
Also reacting, fuji musician and COSON board member, Mr. Agboola Sikiru Ayinde popularly known as SK Sensation, says the AGM was without legal foundation. Hear him: “The AGM is illegal due to the fact that his (Okoroji) reinstatement at the EGM of December 19 was illegal. Secondly, the government regulatory agency, NCC, made the pronouncement of the suspension of COSON operational license. To the best of my knowledge, once the operational license is suspended, all activities automatically ceased. Therefore, the AGM held on Thursday had no backing of the law.”