Nigerian music icon, Onyeka Onwenu, has been reported to have filed a law suit against the music streaming service, IROKING, over alleged violation of her intellectual property rights. Onyeka is suing IROKING for N205 million for unauthorized use of her music.
Onyeka Onwenu’s Statement
“For years, Iroking profited from the sale of my music, even after a two-year contract it signed with me had elapsed. For years, also, they denied that they were doing so, they denied that they had made any profits from their illegal exploits. When they were caught in the lie, they wanted to settle but refused to show up for meetings.
“Iroking as a Company is arrogant and has no regard for the people, Artistes whose works and labour have made them successful. We are therefore suing to make a point. Artistes have a right to profit from their Intellectual Property and labour. Nigeria has Copyright Laws which ought to be respected. The music industry has been built up and sustained by artistes and entrepreneurs like me. I demand to be protected by the Laws of my Country. Iroking must pay for this violation.
“It is also my hope that other Artistes will wake up and demand what is due them. Many do not know that their music is being exploited on YouTube and other carriers.
“Some record companies are selling our music on the internet and claiming ownership of the copyright. If only we would pay attention, Artistes would discover that while they had been doing all the creative work, investing in their careers and in the industry at large, someone else is collecting all the profit. Enough is Enough! Arise Nigerian artistes and take back what belongs to you. You have been cheated for far too long.”
IROKING is yet to make a statement on the situation at this time.
IROKING was launched in 2011 by its parent company, Jason Njoku’s IROKO Partners. Shortly after, it launched a free Music Player application which was available for Android, iOS and Windows Phone 7 smartphones.
The IROKING app for Windows Phone 7, like many other WP7 apps, was never updated for Windows Phone 8 and Windows 10 Mobile, so no surprise there. However, the IROKING mobile app for Android smartphones has not been available in Google Play for a while.