High Court orders MCSK to account for royalty collected since 2017


High Court orders MCSK to account for royalty collected since 2017

In Summary

  • High Court Judges R N Sitati, DS Majanja and TW Cherere gave MCSK 30 days to account for the licence fees and royalties collected since 2017 to date.
  • The judges further stated that KECOBO was at liberty to proceed with the process of calling for new applications for collecting societies.
  • The petitions, as seen by Citizen Digital, were filed by Laban Toto Juma, David Amunga, Kisumu Bar Owners Association, Kisumu Green Garden Restaurant and Kennedy Moses Amakoye.

The High Court has ordered the Music Copyright Society of Kenya (MCSK) to account for all money it has collected as royalty and license since it was denied license by Kenya Copyright Board (KECOBO) in 2017.

A bench of three High Court Judges, Justices R N Sitati, DS Majanja and TW Cherere sitting in Kakamega, gave MCSK 30 days to account for the licence fees and royalties collected since 2017 to date.

“The Music Copyright Society of Kenya is hereby directed to account for all license fee and royalties collected from January 1, 2017 to date within the next 30 days from the date hereof,” said the three judges in a judgement delivered on Friday, July 13, 2018.

The judges further stated that KECOBO was at liberty to proceed with the process of calling for new applications for collecting societies.

“The accounts shall be delivered to Kenya Copyright Board which shall be at liberty to issue any further orders and directions,” ruled the judges.

The judges were delivering judgement in the matter of three consolidated petitions which the Chief Justice had directed to be heard by a three-judge bench.

The petitions, as seen by Citizen Digital, were filed by Laban Toto Juma, David Amunga, Kisumu Bar Owners Association, Kisumu Green Garden Restaurant and Kennedy Moses Amakoye.

They had listed the Kenya Copyright Board (KECOBO), Attorney General, Music Copyright Society of Kenya (MCSK) and Music Publishers Association of Kenya (MPAKE) among others as respondents.

The judges nullified the one-year license issued to Music Publishers Association of Kenya (MPAKE) to operate as a Collective Management Organization (CMO) for lack of public participation.

The judges, however, did not raise any issue with the current license issued to MPAKE for 2018, meaning the CMO will continue collecting royalties on behalf of creatives.

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Story By Ian Omondi
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