By Zita Chidera Ezeno
The Nigerian Copyright Commission (NCC), in line with its statutory duties, including enlightening the public on copyright-related matters, last Tuesday visited Fides Media, seeking partnership in the fight against piracy. The leader of the team and state coordinator of the commission, Mr Gabriel Anikwem, said the visit was also aimed at educating the staff members on copyright issues.
He was accompanied on the visit by the Head of Enforcement, Mr. Chukwudi Okafor and the Principal Copyright Officer, Mr. Clifford Omewani.
Mr. Anikwem described the commission as a federal parastatal under the Federal Ministry of Justice responsible for all copyright matters in Nigeria and that the Commission had been in existence in Anambra State since 2012. He noted that the Commission had recorded massive success in tackling piracy in the state, especially in places like Onitsha.
Furthermore, Mr. Anikwem emphasized the need for record-keeping, inclusive of details, such as the name of the author, book, quantity produced and year of production during printing. He added that authorization should be gotten from the authors to confirm ownership of the intellectual property prior to publication, even as he said that all suspected pirates should be reported to the commission.
He said the state branch of NCC was yet to collaborate with the Anti-Piracy Society of Nigeria (APSON), Anambra State, but was positive about doing so in the nearest future as he said that such partnership would be beneficial in handling copyright issues in the State.
Mr Anikwem however regretted that the commission experienced poor funding, describing it as a major challenge hampering the commission from operating maximally in the state.
The Editor-in-Chief, Mr. Jude Atupulazi, thanked the visiting team on behalf of the Fides Media Staff and assured them that Fides would join hands in enlightening the public and in prosecuting the war against piracy.
Later, Rev. Fr. Pio-Anthony Okafor, the Deputy Director II of Fides Media, who earlier welcomed the officials, took them on a tour of the printing press. The officials were impressed and highly commended the Fides Media staff for their thoroughness, effectiveness and quality standards.