MUSICIAL COPYRIGHT SOCIETY OF NIGERIA LIMITED v. NIGERIA COPYRIGHT COMMISSION
In The Court of Appeal of Nigeria
On Friday, the 21st day of October, 2016
Before Their Lordships
UZO I. NDUKWE-ANYANWU Justice of The Court of Appeal of Nigeria
YARGATA BYENCHIT NIMPAR Justice of The Court of Appeal of Nigeria
BIOBELE ABRAHAM GEORGEWILL Justice of The Court of Appeal of Nigeria
MUSICIAL COPYRIGHT SOCIETY OF NIGERIA LIMITED - Appellant(s)AND
NIGERIA COPYRIGHT COMMISSION - Respondent(s)
This appeal is against the judgment of the Federal High Court, Lagos Division delivered by I. M. Sani J. on 3rd of April, 2009. The Applicant now Appellant in this appeal, initiated this action by way of a motion ex-parte filed on 30th April, 2008. The application was brought under Order 2 Rules 1 & 3 and Order 4 of the Fundamental Rights (Enforcement Procedure) Rules, 1979. In the application, the Appellant sought the leave of the Court to bring an application for the enforcement of its Fundamental Right as provided under Section 40 and 44 of the 1999 Constitution and an order that the leave granted shall operate as a stay of all actions of the Respondent.
After considering the application of the Appellant, the trial judge granted only leave for the Appellant to enforce its Fundamental Rights and pursuant thereto the Appellant on 10th June, 2008, filed a motion on notice. The reliefs sought were:
%u200B%u201C1. A Declaration that S.17 and S.39 of the Copyright Act 2004 are unconstitutional in so far as they circumscribe the Applicant's Fundamental right as guaranteed
under S.40 and S.44 of the 1999 Constitution.
2. A Declaration that the Applicant has a right as owner, assignee and exclusive licensee of various authors and entities to exploit and enjoy her properties in the works and that these rights ought not to be abrogated disturbed or frustrated except by just laws which offer just compensation and are in accord with S.44 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
3. A Declaration that S.17 and S.39 (formerly S.15A and S.32B) of the Copyright Act 2004 are unconstitutional null and void in so far as they seek to abrogate rights of property that have been acquired or have accrued before the promulgation of the said Sections of the Copyright Act.
4. A Declaration that the Applicant does not require a licence from the Respondent in order to carry on their business in the exploitation of rights validly and legitimately acquired by the Applicant.
5. A Declaration that S.17 and S.39 of the Copyright Act 2004 are contrary to the provisions of Articles 10 and 14 of the African Charter on Human and People's Right Ratification and Enforcement Act Cap A9 Laws of the Federation 2004 made
enforceable by S.12(1) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria."
The application contained a 39 paragraph statements of facts to which were attached Exhibits A1, A2, A3i, A3ii, A3iii, A3iv, A3v, B1, B2, B3, B4, B5, B6, B7 and B8.
In opposing the application the Respondent filed a 24 paragraph counter affidavit to which were attached Exhibits A, B, C1 - C6 and D1 - D16.
The parties through their counsel filed and exchanged written addresses. In its judgment, the trial judge found no merit in the application and accordingly dismissed it. Dissatisfied with the decision of the trial Court, the Appellant on 13th May, 2009 filed a Notice of Appeal containing eight (8) grou
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