President of the National Society of Ghana Music Producers (NASGAMP,) John Mensah Sarpong, has revealed pathetically that the perennial piracy problem is still collapsing the music industry in the country.
He disclosed that the piracy menace had reduced the average one million copies of CD sales in a year by music producers of his calibre to just 50,000 in recent times, fearing for the worse.
The NASGAMP President asked for stringent collaborative efforts between his outfit and the security agencies to help curb the piracy menace. He bemoaned that the security agents were not doing enough in the fight against piracy, adding that piracy was on the increase because of lack of education about the act among the people.
The occasion was a one-day sensitization workshop in Kumasi under the theme Advocacy for the Enforcement of the Copyright Law to protect the rights of musicians and music producers in Ghana, and was organized by NASGAMP.
Carlos Sakyi, president, Ghana Music Rights Organization, in his succinct remarks, described pirates as thieves and called for effective and rapid legal system in the country to deal with offenders.
He wept over the influx of foreign pirated music in the country which was sold on the market at cheap prices, thereby, killing the Ghana music industry in the process, asking where do these foreign pirated music CDs pass before getting into the market?
Mr. Sakyi said copyright gave the musician and producers control and power over their music, but he was quick to state that more was needed to be done in order to effectively battle the piracy menace.
The workshop was to update the participants including musicians, music producers, film producers, actors and actresses on their roles and responsibilities to ensure effective enforcement of the Copyright Law in Ghana.
Ambrose Yenah, CEO AIDEC Consultancies International Limited, a consultancy firm in Accra, on his part, challenged the NASGAMP to collaborate with the National Communication Authority to come out with a mechanism to track down those who downloaded music and films on the internet.
He observed that the various splinter groups in the music industry did not augur well for the promotion of music and creative arts in the country, admonishing key players in the industry to unite with a common voice to drum home their grievance.
Source: Joe Awuah Jnr
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