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Disclosure: Back in the day when this blogger was young and naive, he worked both at Kenya Copyright Board (KECOBO) and Music Copyright Society of Kenya (MCSK). The views and opinions expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and should not be attributed to the author’s past or present employers or clients.
It all started with this twitter hashtag. Actually, no – one might want to start from an earlier point in time. On February 20th 1984 a local newspaper published an article titled: “Musicians Complain of Royalties” where it was reported that musicians who were members of the then Musicians Performing Rights Society of Kenya (MPRSK) had complained that the license fees collected on their behalf by MPRSK under a pre-existing collaboration agreement with the Performers Rights Society (PRS) in London were not being paid out to MPRSK members. On March 1st 1984, Mr. S.N. Ndemange the then MCSK General Manager wrote a letter captioned “Royalty Payment” addressed to Mr. Habel Mwalumba Kifoto, one of the complaining musicians mentioned in the newspaper article, explaining that the functions of MPRSK had since been taken over by MCSK, a duly registered company limited by guarantee incorporated a year prior in 1983, that would serve as the national society of composers, authors and publishers of musical works. Shortly after, Kifoto joined MCSK as a member and later rose up the ranks to become the Chairman of the Board of Directors at MCSK, a seat he occupied until his untimely demise on July 31st 2011.