A number of Kenyan musicians have come out to reject the move by the Kenya Copyright Board (KECOBO) to award Kenya Association of Music Producers (KAMP), Performers Rights Society of Kenya (PRISK) and the Music Copyright Society of Kenya (MCSK), licenses to collect royalties on behalf of artistes in 2019. KECOBO confirmed this news in a press release sent out on 20th Sunday 2019. This came after a public participation exercise held last year that invited societies interested in royalty collection to express their interest.
KECOBO which is the regulator of collective management organizations (CMOs) had denied MCSK licenses to collect in 2017 and 2018 over accountability issues. During these period, the Music Publishers association of Kenya (MPAKE) was issued with the licence to administer the rights of music publishers’ and authors’ rights that were previously handled by MCSK. In a press statement written by the disgruntled Kenyan artistes, they were demanding to know how the KECOBO’s executive director Edward Sigei, issued the licenses to KAMP, PRISK and MCSK without involving the Sports and culture CS Rashid Eschesa.
The artistes led by Hurbet Nakitare AKA Nonini and Smiths Mwatia AKA Rufftone, went on to say that the copyright board acted unconstitutionally. They further accused MCSK of collecting monies and failing to distribute in 2017 and 2018 despite not having a license. Under the #kecoboimpunity these artistes are continuing with this conversation online.
KECOBO will be having a public participation today at the NHIF building to discuss the joint tariffs that are to be used by KAMP, PRISK and MCSK in 2019.