Ghana Music Royalties Organization (GHAMRO) Addresses ‘Music Royalties’ Challenge at National Music Summit

The Chairman of the Ghana Music Royalties Organization (GHAMRO) Rex Omar, yesterday at the National Music Summit in Accra, stated that the slow pace of Government’s bureaucracy, the lack of relevant education of the musicians and stakeholders, and the absence of modern technology, where the challenges preventing the realization of accurate and timely music royalties’ distribution to the deserving parties. He stated this during a panel discussion with other key stakeholders as part of the summit’s objective to identify the problems faced by the music industry and suggest solutions.

The Chairman of the Ghana Music Royalties Organization (GHAMRO) Rex Omar, stated that traditional bureaucratic practices from Government was indeed contributing to the delay in setting up proper structures and legislative instruments to facilitate the implementation of policies that will bring relief to musicians and other creative minds in Ghana. “GHAMRO doesn’t work on legislations. It is supposed to be done through the copyright office and then the Attorney General’s Department. But, you know Government works painfully slowly. In fact, it has taken us 4 years, and we have not been able to even change the legal instrument which will allow us to add all these things. And, the way that this industry is changing rapidly, and with the very slow pace of the system in Ghana, it has made it very difficult”, he said.

He added that the unavailability of efficient technological systems were also a contributing factor. “Elsewhere, where the ‘login sheets’ help, there are laws that guarantee how much you are supposed to pay based on the duration of music usage. So, when you provide the ‘login sheets’, it will help determine whose music has been played and to what duration and how much is supposed to be paid; based in many times the music was used. Here in Ghana, we don’t have any law that supports tariffs”, he explained.

Finally, The Chairman of the Ghana Music Royalties Organization (GHAMRO) Rex Omar said that another underlying factor that prevented the smooth and efficient operation of the Ghana Music Royalties Organization was the lack of relevant education of the stakeholders. “People talk about ‘royalties’ and GHAMRO, but, we need education first because, even the rightful owners of the music, don’t give the right information when they are assigning their rights. So, even if GHAMRO gets the money, GHAMRO still wouldn’t know who the actual interested parties are”, he said.

His statement was backed by the President of the Ghana Music Royalties Organization Abraham Adjetey.

By Jerry Wonder

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