Musicians in Malawi have threatened an unspecified action against government if it fails to enact a Copyright Bill into law during the next seating of parliament next year.
President of Musicians Union of Malawi Reverend Chimwemwe Mhango said it was worrisome the bill has been in is gathering dust in government shelves at Capital Hill in Lilongwe since 2011.
“It is a pity that musicians are no longer reaping from their hard work due to piracy which is on the increase now. Malawians musicians are getting poorer and poorer not because they are not creative and talented enough but their skill is wasted because of piracy,” lamented Mhango.
The fired Livingstonia synod church cleric and a great gospel musician himself said the Copyright Bill is aimed at protecting the musicians from exploitation.
“Imagine, the law now fines pirates a mere K5000 to K15000 but the new law will empower magistrates to slap pirates millions of money and kong terms of jail to deter others from the malpractice,” he said.
He said he has on several times approached ministry of Justice officials to speed up the enacting of the law but they have never given satisfactory answers hence the need to give the government an ultimatum.
Civil society groups, the powerful media owners and the opposition are up in arms for the government failure to pass the Access to Information bill.
The media owners representatives who include Times Group’s Leonard Chikadya, Nation Publication’s Mbumba Banda,Zodiak’s Gospel Kazako and Capital Radiols Alaudin Osman joined hamds with Namisa president Thom Khanje and Medical Council of Malawi’s Chijere Chirwa to write a petition to President Peter Mutharika to remind him of promiseson the said bill and threatened an unspecified action if the ill is not passed by Friday, December 4, 2015. Ironically, parliament is rising onthe same date so it is unllikely the bill will be passed.