By Austin Edoho
The Copyright Society of Nigeria (COSON) yesterday celebrated its 7th anniversary, and also honoured late Chief MKO Abiola post-humously at the COSON House, Ikeja, Lagos amidst pomp and pageantry.
The event which was massively attended by artists, celebrities, members of the media, and the general public was one that would not be forgotten in a hurry. Speaking at the occasion, the convener, Chief Tony Okoroji said that COSON has come a long way since its formation and inception 7 years ago, and has attained an enviable level of stability.
Speaking further, Chief Okoroji stressed the need for artists all over the country to be registered with COSON, adding that registration was absolutely free. In his words, “being a member of COSON costs absolutely nothing. There is no registration fees, no subscription fees, no application fees, and no monthly dues. It is absolutely free. You have nothing to lose by being a member of COSON, but you have a whole lot to gain”.
He further enumerated the benefits an artist stands to gain by being a registered member of COSON. He told the excited audience that COSON’s main role was to ensure the protection of intellectual property. The body ensures every artist gets rewarded when his/her music is being used by radio/tv stations, and other bulk users. Expatiating further, Chief Okoroji emphatically stated that no artist has the means or resources to monitor his songs at all times. COSON does that for him.
Held at the impressive 21st century state-of-the-art COSON House Complex, the event was a huge success. Chief Okoroji told the audience that COSON House was built without a dime from any government or group. In his words, “no donor agency, no loan, no government supported COSON House. It belongs to musicians and other stakeholders forever”.
The high point of the event was when Chief Dele Momodu , the CEO and Publisher in Chief of Ovation magazine came up to narrate the story behind the struggles and death of Chief MKO Abiola, the acclaimed winner of the June 12 1993 Presidential election. The hall was electrified as the audience was led into the inner struggles of MKO Abiola who was determined to fight for the masses until the grip of poverty is broken. Alas, his good will and noble intention never saw the light of day.
The climax came when COSON presented an award post-humously to Late MKO Abiola. The award plaque was received by Abiola’s son who was there to join other Nigerians in celebrating a man who was truly a hero.
Among the eminent personalities who graced the occasion was Dele Momodu, Prince Bisi Olatilo, Guv’nor Ken-Caleb Olumese, Ayo Animashaun, Tuface Idibia, Wadada, Azu Arinze, Patrick Doyle, Princess Anne Inyang, and Patience Okafor.