IPR TALK SERIES: 3

 

 

Tunde Irukera, legal practitioner, regulator & administrator, he has practiced law for almost 30 years. In addition to being called to the Nigerian bar, he was also admitted to practice at the Washington State Supreme Court. His vast experience ranges from being in-house counsel, to general counsel, managing partner of a leading law firm and at various times advising both private and government institutions in diverse areas including commercial transactions and litigation, civil rights, regulatory functions, among others. His record of advocacy and representation in competition and consumer issues has being exceptional. He is currently the first CEO/DG, Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (FCCPC), a uniquely pioneering role in the emergence of competition regime in Nigeria.

About the Webinar ‘In the broad national interest, exclusivity of sporting rights in Nigeria is prohibited’ (Article 6.2.8, 2020 Amendment to the 6th Edition of the Nigerian Broadcasting Code) Like a thunderbolt, that singular declaration, with the force of law, has shaken the foundations of broadcasting regulation since the advent of pay TV in Nigeria. Since March when it was first published by NBC, the controversy that particular provision, among other provisions, in the code has generated has raised pertinent questions concerning the emerging regulatory regime for industry practices and standards regarding acquisition of broadcast rights generally and with particular reference to premium content which is at the core of broadcasting market. In the same vein, the code prohibits broadcasters or licensees from entering into any form of broadcasting rights acquisition either in Nigeria or anywhere in the world acquire any broadcasting rights in such a manner as to exclude persons, broadcasters or licensee in Nigeria from sub-licensing the same and in that regard any agreement, concerted practices or taking any decisions which have the objective of preventing competition in the broadcasting industry (Article 9.0.1). Indeed, this is unprecedented since the first broadcasting code, which signposted the full emergence of a regulatory framework for the broadcasting space in Nigeria in 1993.

Clearly, the combined effect of those provisions in the code has ushered the media industry into a new regulatory regime or dispensation, for a broadcast market of over 7 million viewers with far-reaching implication on rights’ acquisition practices and access to premium content for the Nigerian broadcasters, particularly live coverage of English premier and European leagues with millions of viewers including consumers of entertainment across the country. Ultimately, the new amendment has raised a wide range of multisectoral issues relating to intellectual property rights (IPRs), competition policies, regulation of private enterprise, sport law, public policy and more, which are now the broader issues to examine as part of the new challenges of emergent content industry in Nigeria. As usual, L & A Webinar seeks to interrogate these issues from various perspectives as they affect the broadcasting and media industry. It explores a whole range of questions with a view to decoding this controversial broadcasting code. What are the ramifications of this exclusivity provision in the code? What does it portend for the emergent content industry? Is it justifiable? Is it negotiable? How would regulation satisfy market dynamics? How would market dynamics meet the imperatives of public or national interest? Which way forward? These and many more questions our eminent panel of experts would answer in this webinar.

Guy Murray Bruce Broadcaster & Media Executive. Guy did not spare any time after graduating with a Business Administration degree from California State University in 1985 before plunging deep into the waiting waters of Nigeria’s nascent entertainment and media industry where he has carved a niche for himself. From Vice President Silverbird Group 28 years ago to taking charge as Group President 10 years ago responsible for both the local and international operations of Silverbird Group with extensive port-folios ranging from Silverbird Cinemas in Nigeria, Ghana and Liberia; Silverbird Communications Limited STV and Rhythm FM; Silverbird News24; Dream Magic Studios USA; Silverbird Film Distribution Limited and Silverbird Properties Limited, Guy is unarguably one of the leading lights and indeed a captain of media industry. He has served in many roles over the years, including organizer of the Most Beautiful Girl in Nigeria pageant which led to the emergence of the first Nigerian, Miss Agbani Darego as the winner of Miss World pageant in 2001 & the hosting of the Miss World pageant in Nigeria the following year, member,  International Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, among several others. After having served as Secretary since 2013, he is currently elected Chairman of Independent Broadcasters Association of Nigeria (IBAN), an important and unique role which is at the core of the broadcasting industry in Nigeria since the reform of the industry in 1993.

Emeka Mba, a complete Media Executive from the print, to the electronic to the screen to the digital; regulator; administrator & entrepreneur. Emeka is an encyclopedia of everything media having served in various capacities at both private and public sectors in the media and film industries. He has about 30 years’ experience in the convergence of media, entertainment, and technology. It is only Mr. Mba who holds the unique priviledge of having served in two separate Chief Executive capacities in the film and media industries in Nigeria; DG, National Film Video Censors Board (NFVCB) and afterwards, DG, National Broadcasting Commission. As broadcasting regulator, he laid the foundation for the new national digital ecosystem and the transition from analogue to digital television in Nigeria. He remains one of the most consulted resources in the media and broadcasting industry in Nigeria. He is currently the founder of Questech Media Consulting, a media & entertainment consulting practice.

Mrs. Nkem Itanyi is evidently one of the emerging intellectual property scholarly voices in Nigeria. She holds an LLB honours degree of Obafemi Awolowo University, LL.M of University College London (UCL), and currently a Ph. D Researcher at Queen’s University, Belfast, UK. She has published widely and a frequent speaker at IP conferences and seminars in Nigeria and outside. She currently teaches IP and commercial law at the Faculty of Law, UNN.

Jade Kouletakis is an IP lawyer with focus in public law and regulation. She joined the Faculty of law of Abertay University in Scotland in 2017. Prior to that, she held positions at the University of the Western Cape and the University of Cape Town in South Africa where she co-created the ‘Marrakesh Treaty Implementation Guide for South Africa’, a document intended to guide South African law-makers in implementing WIPO’s most recent Treaty – Marrakesh Treaty (to Facilitate Access to Published Works for Persons Who Are Blind, Visually Impaired, or Otherwise Print Disabled). She is a frequent speaker and contributor to debates around South Africa’s IP and innovation ecosystem.

Ayoyemi Lawal-Arowolo is a Professor at the School of Law & Security Studies, Babcock University. Yemi has lived and studied across three Continents. She obtained her Bachelors’s in law degree at the Lagos State University (LASU) and was called to the bar in 1998. After practicing law briefly, she proceeded to the United States where she obtained her LL.M at Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis and Ph. D at Kent University of Canterbury, United Kingdom. She is one of the pioneer staff at the Nigerian Copyright Institute, the research, and training arm of Nigerian Copyright Commission while an adjunct lecturer at the Faculty of Law, Nasarawa State University. She has several years of teaching, research, and consulting experience with a focus on intellectual property rights and knowledge systems in developing and African countries. She has written in peer-review journals and her recent works have been published in the European Intellectual Property Review and Queen Mary Journal of Intellectual Property, among others. She has recently served as Kent Law School fellow. She is partner and head, legal research at L & A Legal Consultants.

Olatunde Laoye is Managing Partner L & A Legal Consultants. He is a consummate solicitor and expert negotiator at the transactional end of practice. He has extensive experience in corporate and commercial practice, intellectual property, media and entertainment, real estate, banking and financial services, project/venture capital, financing and maritime law and practice.  He was Special Adviser to Director General/Chief Executive of Nigerian Maritime and Safety Agency (NIMASA). He has previously worked in the financial services sector and still serves as Director and on the Board of companies with diverse business portfolio. He has negotiated and served as solicitor in major acquisitions, restructuring and venture arrangements in the capital market, private companies and licensing in the media and entertainment industry. He is a quiet achiever and has worked behind closed doors in many developments in the entertainment and media industry.

Adebambo Adewopo Of Counsel, L & A Legal Consultants. He is a Professor of intellectual property at the Nigerian Institute of Advanced Legal Studies (NIALS) and Senior Advocate of Nigeria, the first IP academic admitted to the Inner bar. Prior to taking the IP Chair at NIALS, he served as Director-General of Nigerian Copyright Commission. He is widely published and practices extensively in the field.

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