26 February 2013

Rwanda: Artist Wins Copyright Suit

Cécile Kayirebwa, one of Rwanda's major musical exports is a brave woman.

Late last year when she dragged to court six radio stations including the public broadcaster Orinfor, many thought it was an attempt to write on water.

Several months later, last week, the commercial court sitting in Kigali gave her victory a development that was described by her lawyer Safari Kizito as a major precedent for the future. As the case is in the region, not only Rwanda, musicians toil to make music only for radio stations to play it for free yet artists find themselves in a tight corner that makes it almost suicidal to lash out at the stations.

"In many ways, getting our music played is viewed as luck and sometimes we end up paying to get played, it's a very difficult industry especially for upcoming musicians looking to make an impact," says April.

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