Royalty Issues Would Have Been Resolved if Mohbad was Our Member, PMAN Declares

Royalty Issues Would Have Been Resolved if Mohbad was Our Member, PMAN Declares

Juliet Akoje in Abuja

The President of the Performing Musicians Association of Nigeria (PMAN), Mr. Pretty Okafor, yesterday, said if late musician, Ilerioluwa Oladimeji Aloba, popularly known as Mohbad, was its member, controversies surrounding issues of royalties with his former record label, Marlian Records would have been amicably resolved.

He disclosed this when he appeared before the House of Representatives panel probing Mohbad’s death, particularly the allegations of harassment and unpaid royalties.

Okafor, regretted that the new crop of musicians failed to see the need to join PMAN, which he said had numerous benefits for them, including resolving contractual issues between musicians and record labels. He urged musicians, especially the younger ones, to become active members of the association, which he said was a trade union.

“We engage the music managers’ association of Nigeria. We engage the record label association of Nigeria and we also engage the artistes.

“That is why it is difficult to manage the crisis that erupted now. Some of them believe that PMAN is archaic. Some of them believe that it is only for old people.

“Some of them, the record labels manipulate their psyche not to make them stay under the authority of PMAN that is why this kind of crisis emerged.

“So, if we reach out to the record label association they will need to reach out to their artistes.

“They must be a member of PMAN so that we can protect their interests and also protect the interest of the record label owners because they are supposed to get certification from PMAN.

“The structure has been that the record label association and record label owners must be registered members of the union so that they can be monitored and guided. Same with the musicians. Also the music managers are supposed to be part.”

He further said “We have a lot of people under PMAN including Tuface, MI, Banky and so on. They all belong to the association.

“But the younger ones maybe their managers and record labels were not passing positive messages to them and that is why it was difficult for them to join the union.

“So when the crisis started I personally wanted to interfere, but I could not …. That is the main reason for being a PMAN member. Because of contractual issues. PMAN like I said, the record labels are also registered certified carriers of PMAN certificate to operate the record label.

“Then the artists are members. So the burden is on PMAN to now call the record labels to the table and call the artist and his management to the table and address it. Because we have a legal team, they handle that.”

The late Mohbad’s lawyer while speaking said before his client died, he had some arrangements with Marlian Records which were still subject of dispute today.

 “Mohbad and the Marlian Records had some arrangements which I cannot term as a record label agreement yet, and this is subject to litigation currently.

“While he worked with them in some sense he released an Extended Play (EP) and number of singles. Now those songs are subject to litigation which he was in court for prior to his demise. “Subsequently sometime in October last year, he set up his own label, Imolenization Limited, and he released an EP which he received the revenue for directly to himself because he was the sole owner of the company. So on the EP which is called blessed it is fully secure.

“What we have been trying to retrieve prior to his demise and currently are the EP and singles. Those are still being controlled by the Marlian records and distributed though their distributors.

“That is what we have been in court trying to resolve until now, up until his demise and we are still in court for that.”

 However, the Chairman of the Committee, Olumide Osoba, said they were committed to ensuring issues pertaining to the late musician’s royalties and entitlements are resolved.

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