Mixed Emotions After Sauti Sol Threatens To Sue Raila Odinga Over Music Copyright

Boys band Sauti Sol is under fire following an official statement on social media threatening to sue the Azimio coalition over copyright infringement.

Sauti Sol

Azimio team on Monday 16, used their popular tune ‘extravaganza’ while announcing the post of the running mate.

The song played in the background at the Kenyatta International Convention Center(KICC) as ODM party leader Raila Odinga announced his running mate, Martha Karua.

Raila Odinga after announcing Martha Karua

The band members, Polycarp Otieno, Willis Austin Chimano, Mudigi Savara and Bien-Aime Baraza, said they are intending to sue terming the move as copyright infringement contrary to section 35 CAP 170 of the Copyright Act of Kenya,

“We did not license this song to the Azimio la Umoja campaign neither did we give any consent for its use in the announcement of their Vice-Presidential candidate,” Sauti Sol said in a signed statement.

Sauti Sol

“This action is a flagrant disregard of our basic and fundamental rights to property and freedom of association. Through their action, they have taken away the right to own and control what is originally and solely our property and have directly associated us to their campaign without our consent. This is contrary to Article 4 of the Constitution of Kenya,” the letter reads.

“We are disappointed by the Azimio la Umoja Campaign’s blatant disregard of our right to control the use of our copyright. We shall be seeking legal remedy for this clear violation of our copyright.”

Responding to the letter, ODM party said that the song was played to appreciate the band rather than show any affiliation.

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“We would like to assure our celebrated musical team, Sauti Sol, that we love them and appreciate their music so much,” ODM tweeted.

“The group has carried our country’s flag so high in international fora and every Kenyan appreciates this. Playing their song yesterday was a show of love for their work.”

Their statement comes just days after the Music Copyright Society of Kenya (MCSK) confirmed receiving Ksh562,500 from Raila as license fees for music to be used in his campaigns.

The payment was made by his daughter Winnie Odinga after meeting MCSK Senior Licensing Officer David Kiragu on May 7.

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