The Director General, Nigerian Copyright Commission (NCC) Mr. Afam Ezekude has assured that the commission is determined to sustain the fight against piracy and enjoined all pirates to desist from importing pirated works or face the wrath of the law.
The Director General stated this while taking delivery of the seized containers by the Nigerian Customs Service (NCS) in collaboration with officers of the commission in Lagos recently.
He said that the NCC’s persistent fight against the importation of pirated works into the country has paid off again with the seizure of three containers of pirated goods worth N275, 000, 000. 00 in Lagos.
The seized containers are as follows:
20 ft Container No. TRLU 9360256, carrying CDs and DVDs of various Nigerian and foreign musical and film works seized at Five Star Logistics Terminal of Tin Can Island Port.
20 ft Container No Ponu 0972142 stacked with Bibles seized at the TICT Terminal in Tin Can Island Port.
20 ft Container No MRSU 0099184 carrying books of different titles and authors seized at the AP Moller Terminal at Apapa Port.
Appreciating the collaboration between the commission and other government agencies in the fight against piracy, the DG commended the Comptroller General, NCS, Col. Hammed Ali (rtd), NCS Area Comptrollers, Deputy Controllers and the entire officers and men of the NCS in the Tin Can Island and Apapa Port command of the service for their dedication in facilitating the seizures.
The Director General stressed, “From 2011 to the 3rd quarter of 2016, our collaboration with the Nigerian Customs Service led to the seizure of a total of 25 containers of pirated copyright works. Within the same period, the commission carried out a total of 289 anti-piracy operations across the country and seized over 8 million assorted pirated copyright products with a market value of about N8.3 billion. If these goods were allowed to enter the Nigerian market, Nigerian copyright owners will be losing that amount to pirates.
Furthermore, the commission within the period filed several criminal charges against copyright offenders in different Federal High Courts across the country and secured a total of 55 convictions against copyright offenders. Other cases are in different stages of trial,” he added.
The DG urged copyright owners and other stakeholders to deepen their collaboration with the commission in the areas of intelligence gathering, investigation and prosecution of copyright offenders to ensure that all creators and genuine investors earn substantial income from their creativity and investment.
Meanwhile, the seized containers were earlier handed over to the Zonal Manager, Lagos Operational Office, NCC; Mr. Obi Ezeilo by the Comptroller Tin can Area Command represented by Deputy Comptroller Ekewi T. K. Nwachukwu, at the 5 STAR Terminal and TICT Terminal on January 1.