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Filmmaker, Mahmood Ali-Balogun, returns as AVRS chair

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Ali Balogun

Notable filmmaker, Mahmood Ali-Balogun, was on Tuesday, January 15, in Lagos, returned as Chairman for the Board of the Audio-Visual Rights Society of Nigeria (AVRS).

A statement by the Chairman of the Publicity Committee of the Society, Sanni Muazu, indicated that Ali-Balogun polled nine out of the 15 directors’ vote to emerge chairman of the collective rights management organisation.

He succeeds filmmaker and former president of the Coalition of the Nollywood Guild and Association, Bond Emeruwa, who had functioned as acting chairman between 2014 and 2016.

With his election at the extra ordinary general meeting, Ali-Balogun takes full charge of the AVRS and would lead a Board expected to point the way forward for the Society.

In a short message, Ali-Balogun, an acknowledged industry leader and ambassador, said: “This is to say thank you to everyone for their congratulatory messages and kind words. They are highly appreciated.

‘I count on every support and goodwill from you all as we journey towards the desired goal of positioning AVRS as a licensing and distribution company relevant to the lives of its subscribers in particular and the audio-visual community at large.”

It would be recalled that the Nigerian Copyright Commission (NCC) had approved AVRS to function as the sole CMO for cinematograph films in Nigeria in November 2015.

It had earlier in October 2014 announced that it had licensed AVRS to be to the cinematographic industry in Nigeria, what the CMOs, Copyright Society of Nigeria (COSON) and Reproductive Rights Society of Nigeria (REPRONIG), licensed few years ago, are to musical works, sound recordings and literary works, respectively.

Following the approval from government, AVRS embarked on series of stakeholders meetings across the country, with a view to enlightening stakeholders in the film industry on the purpose, nature and operations of the new CMO. The society has also initiated high-level discussions with relevant bodies and international organisations.

The next stage for the AVRS, especially now that Ali-Balogun would control the gear stick, is the commencement of actual licencing for use of audio-visual works, so that producers of audio-visual works would begin to earn royalties.


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