The Inspector-General of Police, Alhaji Ibrahim Idris has announced that the Nigerian Police will soon begin a consistent war against copyright infringement in Nigeria because of the damage piracy is doing to the nation’s economy.
The IG was speaking in his Abuja office when the Minister of Information & Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, led a delegation of the Nigerian creative industry to meet with him Monday.
During the visit, the Minister recreated the horrors that Nigerian musicians, movie makers, authors and publishers are going through as a result of the debilitating piracy in the country and the harm it is doing to the national economy. He called on the IG to set up special mobile police squads across the country that will continually deal pirates a deadly blow and force them out of business.
The Inspector-General there and then nominated two Deputy Inspectors-General to immediately meet with stakeholders in the creative industry and key agencies of government to give him an action plan to take on the pirates across the country without delay.
Also speaking at the meeting, COSON Chairman, Chief Tony Okoroji, who is championing the fight against the infringement of the rights of creative people, said that the nature of wealth in the world has changed, and for the national economy to thrive, everyone in Nigerian needs to understand that respect for intellectual property rights is central to the economic growth of any nation in the new knowledge economy.
He said that in practically every country across the continent, Nigerian music, movies, literature and other forms of intellectual property are making waves. The former president of PMAN regretted that it was pirated versions of these products that are spread all over. He wondered why Nigeria would not vigorously fight against the stealing of Nigerian wealth as the nation would fight if it is Nigerian oil that is so brazenly stolen. Chief Okoroji called for the teaching of Intellectual Property in all the Police Colleges in the country.
Back at the Ministry of Information & Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed immediately set up a team to interface with the police to ensure that action is taken immediately.