Connect with us


Court awards musician N20m damages against MTN, 2 others for copyright infringement



Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu of the Federal High Court, Abuja, on Thursday awarded a musician, Liberty Williams, popularly call”Pupayannis” N20 million damages against MTN over copyright infringement.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the Abuja-based musician, in a suit marked FHC/ABJ/CS/2017 instituted in 2017 by the copyright owner of “Love is Everything”, Liberty Williams, against MTN and its Chief Executive Officer, Ferdi Moolman; Nowhere to Run Entertainment Ltd and Emmanuel Abanah.

Justice Ojukwu held that MTN’s action constituted an infringement of the plaintiff’s copyright, adding that the defendant had no right to use the plaintiff’s work without the requisite permission.

She also restrained the defendants, their agents, privies or assigns from further infringing plaintiff’s copyright to song.

In particular, she ordered MTN to remove plaintiff’s from its call ring back tune platform.

Mr Mabruk Kunmi-Olayinka of the law firm of Abdullahi Ibrahim, SAN, lawyer to the defendants, had urged the court to dismiss the plaintiffs claim as the plaintiff had not proved any entitlement to the declarative and monetary reliefs sought in the suit.

The plaintiff, Williams AKA Pupayannis, had asked the court to declare that MTN’s sale as a caller ring back tune of the song he composed without his consent constituted  an infringement on his copyright.

He sued MTN and its Chief Executive Officer, Ferdi Moolman; No Where to Run Entertainment Ltd and its Chairman/Managing Director, Emmanuel Abanah, as co-defendants.

He alleged that MTN, in collaboration with No Where to Run Entertainment Company, offered his song “Love is Everything” to its millions of subscribers as a ring tone and caller tune without his consent.

In his statement of claims, the plaintiff said he wrote, composed and financed the production of the song in July 2013, three months before he entered into an agreement with No Where to Run Entertainment Ltd.

He contended that he did not, at any time, surrender the master tape and the right of the song to the entertainment company and its chief executive or to anyone else, natural or corporate.

The plaintiff had prayed the court to award N200m as general damages and N100m as aggravated and punitive damages in his favour.

The suit was originally filed on his behalf by Felix, Igelige and Associates, which became Remedium Law Partners.

MTN and its Chief Executive Officer, Ferdi Moolman together with No Where to Run Entertainment Ltd and its Chairman/Managing Director Emmanuel Abanah were listed as co-defendants.

Dr Ogaga Ifowodo of Remedium Law Partners had urged the court to award substantial general damages as well as exemplary or aggravated damages against the defendants

Justice Ojukwu found the defendants to have flagrantly violated plaintiff’s copyright, while ordering MTN to render an account, within three months, of its sale of the plaintiff’s song as a caller ring back tune.

The process according to Ojukwu is to be in conjunction with the National Communications Commission and the account reported to the court.

Spread the love
Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Sanwo-Olu Approves 20 Percent Increase In Salaries For Civil Servants




Lagos state governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has approved a 20 per cent increase in salaries for civil servants in the state.

In a circular seen by IfakoIjaiyeNews, signed by  Hakeem Muri Okunola, Head of Service and dated March 20, the increase took effect from January 1, 2023.

In the circular, the state government said the arrears from January till date will be paid along with the March salary.


Spread the love
Continue Reading


Lagos Auto Dealer Arraigned For Killing Wife




A popular Lagos auto dealer, Ikechukwu Ogbonna, alias (IVD) was on Monday arraigned before an Ikeja High Court for the alleged involuntary manslaughter of his wife,  Abimbola.

Lagos State Government arraigned IVD on one count of involuntary manslaughter.

He, however, pleaded not guilty to the charge.

The State Counsel, Mrs Adeshola Bello had informed the court that the defendant was for arraignment, adding that there was a mixed up in the date the alleged offence was committed.

The offence, she said, contravened Section 222 of the Criminal Laws of Lagos State, 2015.

“We have on record Oct.10, 2022, but the actual date of the incident was Oct.12

“We pray for the indulgence of the court to make amendment on the date,” she said.

The defence counsel, Mr Victor Ogunde, SAN, sought bail for the defendant, following his arraignment.

Ogunde added that the suit against the defendant was with a different number.

Justice Modupe Nicole-Clay questioned the defence for bringing a bail application despite the defendant being on bail since March 1.

Nicole-Clay thereafter adjourned until March 30 for the commencement of trial.

Abimbola was said to have died as a result of the fire incident that occurred in the couple’s home on  Oct.12, 2022.

Spread the love
Continue Reading


Truck Crushes Okada Rider, Passenger To Death



A commercial motorcyclist and his passenger, on Wednesday, lost their lives after colliding with a truck at Bible College area on the Lagos-Abeokuta expressway.

The Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) Sector Commander in Ogun, Mr Ahmed Umar, confirmed the accident on Wednesday in Ota, Ogun.

Umar said that the accident, which happened at about 9.10 a.m., involved four people, a vehicle and a Bajaj motorcycle.

He said that the motorcycle, with no registration number, drove against traffic and collided with a Daf truck, marked: KTG 941 YG, leading to the death of the Okada rider and the passenger, while two others were unhurt.

“The corpses of the dead had been deposited at the morgue of the General Hospital, Ifo,” he said.

The sector commander blamed the accident on excessive speeding and route violation.

He advised motorists and okada riders to desist from excessive speeding to avoid unnecessary loss of life.

Umar also cautioned them to refrain from driving against traffic to prevent mishaps on the highway.

Spread the love
Continue Reading