The chairman of the Interim Board of the Ghana Music Rights Organization (GHAMRO), Carlos Sakyi, has warned his detractors whom he describes as “enemies of progress” to stop attributing their orchestrated web of lies to “deep throat sources” and identify themselves, so he can sue them in court for libel.
He said he had initially decided not to respond when the vicious attacks on his personality in the media began, with bold sensational headlines like “Carlos Sakyi In More Trouble”, “Carlos Sakyi Under Pressure”, etc. all of which were a bunch of lies, but his silence had rather emboldened them to unleash more fabrications, thus making it necessary for him to set the record straight
In a statement, the copyright advocate noted, “Less than two weeks after GHAMRO received its Certificate of Approval from the Attorney-General, text messages plus stories planted in the local media and internet by faceless cowards stated that I had decided to step down as chairman and hold elections, when no media person had spoken to me. And to this day, no individual or organization within the music industry has asked me to resign”.
According to him, “The amazing part of it all is the baseless and ridiculous allegations of corruption. When GHAMRO was less than 2 weeks old and had barely began operations, it was incredibly accused of corruption The reality is that, even now, two clear months after the liquidation of COSGA, money belonging to GHAMRO has not yet been transferred into GHAMRO’s account and is still in the custody of the Registrar General of Ghana, the official liquidator of COSGA”. Where is the corruption? This is a clear case of “brainless manufactured lies”!
Carlos Sakyi, who is mad at his detractors, challenged them to produce evidence of wrongdoing against him. Carlos described the allegations as “wicked fabrications punishable by God and doomed to fail”.
He said, “God is my witness and protector and knows I have worked tirelessly to improve the lives of music rights owners, and that I have operated with absolute integrity and transparency.”
Carlos Sakyi cautioned the media to cross check facts before publication, and not allow themselves to be used by unscrupulous persons with selfish interests.
He added, “I did not impose myself on GHAMRO. I was elected chairman of the Board by overwhelming majority vote of members including Kojo Antwi, Rex Omar, Amandzeba, Kabobo and representatives from NASGAMP, GAPI, VEMAG,CAMA, PROMAG, REPPAGh, etc. The only abstention was from MUSIGA, which nominated Kojo Antwi who promptly declined and nominated me. Non-board members like Nana Kwame Ampadu openly endorsed me”.
He expressed sadness at the attempt to destroy the united front GHAMRO represented when music owners were on the verge of prosperity after years of division and bad practices that had impoverished and “killed” industry icons like Snr. Eddie Donkor, Kwabena Akwaboa, Alhaji K, Frimpong, AAA and several others.
On GAPI’s ultimatum to hold elections within 90 days, he stated that it was unrealistic, demonstrably irresponsible and dictatorial, in the light of the fact that GHAMRO was a coalition of diverse groups and interests, each representing a fraction of the industry, and that no single individual or association could impose its will or resolutions on it.
The opinions of all the others concerning the elections would be sought, factoring in modalities including availability of funds, credible database of members and voting system, and a decision based on democratic practice would be arrived at, which must be respected by all.
“GAPI’s dictatorial ultimatum came barely three weeks after the board began operations, and within 24 hours, before the board could respond, they had placed it in the media, in an article captioned ‘Stakeholders Warn Carlos Sakyi, Others’, defaming me and GHAMRO”. Mr. Sakyi said he complained to GAPI’s representative, who apologised to him and the board on their behalf. The vicious attacks however continued.
He said GAPI was using the media to mislead the public, citing a report on the GAPI forum in Accra, captioned ‘GHAMRO Members Call For Early Congress’, as deceptive and a gross distortion of what had transpired.
He said the report had enraged several key stakeholders, who claimed their vehemently stated opposition to the call for early elections had not been captured.
He believed GAPI’s actions were undermining the interests of GHAMRO locally and internationally, affecting its ability to collect royalties and raise funds for embattled music rights owners who are simply fed up with the hostile disruptive actions of GAPI.
“GAPI was part of all key decisions taken up to the time the license was approved, from the vote that chose the name GHAMRO, to the unanimous vote for adoption of the Constitution in February 2011, including the decision for elections to be held not beyond 2 years of operations, (after GAPI was given a copy of the then draft Constitution to study for 2 weeks!), to the Registration of GHAMRO with GAPI represented among the first directors!”.
“It is really strange that suddenly GAPI is rubbishing the very Constitution it ratified (commended as “brilliant” by some of its top members), by now referring to it as a draft! Indeed, if it is a draft, then GHAMRO (GAPI inclusive) has deceived the state by obtaining its license by fraud! God forbid. Their 90-day ultimatum for elections also defies reason! Clearly, some serious manipulation is taking place!” he stated.
Mr. Sakyi entreated level headed members of GAPI, some of whom he described as close colleagues, to restrain the trouble makers within their ranks who are using GAPI to prosecute their selfish agenda, adding that music owners should also beware of some unreliable veteran stakeholders who were creating division by their poisonous sayings, which thankfully carried no weight due to their track record for double standards.
He thanked rights owners in Accra, Kumasi, Takoradi, Cape Coast, Tamale and many other parts of Ghana and beyond for their messages and massive support and encouragement, and promised to ensure their interests were uncompromisingly promoted and protected.
“Currently, the main concern of stakeholders is the distribution of royalties, and this must be the Board’s immediate priority. Elections are an obligation under GHAMRO’s Constitution and would definitely be held at the appropriate time,” Carlos Sakyi concluded.
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