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Duma FM risks losing equipment to COSBOTS

MOMPATI TLHANKANE
Radio Station equipment
Local radio station Duma FM now have until end of this month to pay Copyright Society of Botswana (COSBOTS) or risk having their broadcasting equipment confiscated by the latter.

This week COSBOTS knocked on  Duma FM doors demanding their owed royalties. This comes months after Duma FM lost a case in which it was appealing a High Court ruling that directed the radio station to pay COSBOTS P620, 000. 

After months of waiting, and artists demanding their royalties COSBOTS decided to follow up on the court order and according to the organisation’s chief executive officer, Lesego Selotate Duma FM have agreed to pay at the end of the month.  “They told that that they have been struggling financially, so we agreed to give them until end of month,” he said. Selotate said if the radio station failed to honour the agreement,  they have to find other ways of getting what is due to them, and the artists.

“We can’t stop them from playing local music, but we have the power to attach their property which

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include their broadcasting equipment.  So without their equipment, they can no longer operate,” he highlighted.

He said they are only exercising their power as per the court order. Selotate emphasised that if Duma FM doesn’t pay like they have agreed this week, then the messengers of court will have to do their job.

Duma FM programmes manager, Donald Seberane refused to comment on the matter. He told Arts & Culture that his ethics doesn’t not allow him to comment on the matter. “Continue with COSBOTS’s side of the story, we will reveal ours when the time comes,” he said.  Seberane added that no one at Duma FM is allowed to say anything pertaining the matter.

COSBOTS is mandated by the Copyright and Neighbouring Rights Act CAP 68:02 to amongst others license and collect royalties from users of copyright/protected works to distribute to copyright owners.



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