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Musicians Welcome Suspension of Uganda Performing Rights Society Officials :: Uganda Radionetwork
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Musicians Welcome Suspension of Uganda Performing Rights Society Officials

Sophie Gombya, a music artist and UMA committee member, told URN that as musicians they are happy with the decision. She says music is a business and artistes need to earn what they deserve.

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Music artists have welcomed the suspension of the top leadership of the Uganda Performing Rights Society-UPRS, describing it as good news and positive step towards getting the pay of their sweat.  

On Monday, government through the Uganda Registration Services Bureau-URSB suspended UPRS Chief Executive Officer James Wasula and the Compliance Officer, Dickson Matovu to pave way for investigations into their works following complaints different groups in the arts industry.   

According to URSB, the suspension of the officials will allow for effective inquiries into the constitution, workings, and financial conditions of the society.

“There have also been a number of complaints from members of the society with allegations of mismanagement of finances and remittances of royalties collected from rights users which URSB would also like to look into critically,” URSB said in a statement.

In April, artists under Uganda Musicians Association-UMA petitioned the Speaker of Parliament, Rebecca Kadaga calling investigation into the association. UMA has up to 100 members.

URN spoke to some members of the association about the suspension of the officials. The artists say the suspension of the officials will help the inquiry find the truth about their royalties. 

Sophie Gombya, a music artist and UMA committee member, told URN that as musicians they are happy with the decision. She says music is a business and artistes need to earn what they deserve.

//Cue in: “It is good news…”

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The royalties of the artists are paid by radio stations, bars and other organisations including supermarkets and hotel chains that use their works.  

However, according to some music artists whereas the money is paid to the society, they are not told how much the society collects.

Ibrahim Mayanja alias Big Eye, a music artist, says all they want is transparency. 

//Cue in: “if someone pays…”

Cue out: “…sit with us”.

While UPRS is an organisation formed by the authors of the works, it is recognized by government as a collection society and therefore can investigate its works if any members complain. 

Kabiito Karamagi and Rita Baguma Birungi of Ligomarc Advocates have been appointed caretakers of the society.