The Ghana Music Rights Organisation’s (GHAMRO) task force was arrested by the Ayi Mensah police command whiles conducting their duty of inspecting licences of spinners (Music Equipment) used in public for funerals, music concerts and other outdoor events.
The unfortunate development occurred on Sunday, August 26, 2018, at Madina, a suburb of the Greater Accra Region.
Speaking to Andy Dosty on Daybreak Hitz, Yaw Osborne, the head of the GHAMRO task force said his staff, who were branded in GHAMRO uniforms and identity cards, were arrested and detained at the Ayi Mensah police station after an unknown person alerted the police about their operations.
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Mr Yaw Osborne disclosed that the task force was in the process of explaining the copyright law 2005, which mandated GHAMRO to license all commercial music equipment used for playing music in public or commercially, when some team of policemen, swooped down on them, handcuffed them and sent them out of the Madina jurisdiction.
He added that they were sent to Ayi Mensah near Aburi and detained overnight without any hearing to ascertain whether or not they were lawfully mandated to carry out the operation.
“I was in Kumasi at the time. We were on a task force operation when I received a call from one of my men at the police station to inform me on the matter, I spoke with the officer in charge to explain the situation but he said he couldn’t do anything since the commander of the station had gone home…” he told Andy.
Asked by Andy Dosty if they went about operating with police protection, he said “if the task force had to seize someone’s equipment, they did that in the presence of the police, under their supervision but on this particular case, they were educating and sensitizing the offenders on the state of the law, since the spinning equipment belonged to a church and not for commercial purposes…”
Prince Tsegah, a staff of Multimedia Group who also doubles as the public relations head of GHAMRO indicated the Director of Public Affairs, ACP David Oklu has been well informed on the matter.
However, speaking on Daybreak Hitz on Hitz FM on Tuesday, the CEO of GHAMRO, Mr Abraham Adjetey disclosed that the members of the taskforce team have been released.
Mr Adjetey said “We communicate with police before we task things up. They just went there to inquire whether they have license, which they didn’t. They were released immediately. Apparently, the call was made by someone…”.