Haven flouted the directive of Justice Yellin S. Bogoro of the Federal High Court, Lagos, to immediately unfreeze the bank accounts of COSON at the bank and to pay Copyright Society of Nigeria (COSON) N70 million in damages for unlawful freezing of accounts and inspite of an earlier decision in 2019 by Justice M.S. Hassan, musicians stormed the Opebi branch of Access Bank Plc with various inscriptions on their placards asking the bank to pay them their money.
Led by the chairman of COSON, Tony Okoroji who together with other musicians like Righteousman, Kenny Saint Brown, Koffi Da Guru, King Wadada, Candy Sea among others, the artistes took turns to sing and demand for their money.
It was also gathered that written instructions given to the bank by COSON to pay earned specific royalties to several musicians have also been disobeyed by the bank.
Speaking on the development, COSON Chairman, Chief Tony Okoroji, said “That this is happening in a supposed democracy, is crazy! We have been patient with Access Bank, very patient. They seem to have a corporate culture of never keeping to their word. You have meetings with them, reach agreements, by the time you leave, the agreements have changed. For almost four years, for no justifiable reason, they have traded with the money belonging to their customer at no cost and inflicted untold hardship on our members, their loyal customers. Two Federal High Court Judges have delivered clear judgments requiring Access Bank to release the funds of their customer who has not borrowed any money from them and is not owing them one naira and they have chosen to disobey the orders of court.
“Rather than pay us our money, they use our money to hire expensive lawyers who come to court, file incoherent motions and make juvenile arguments to hold on tenaciously to money belonging to an Access Bank customer. They acquire luxury estates in Banana Island and their customers whose funds they have brazenly ceased, die in penury. This is what banking seems to have turned into in Nigeria and many Nigerians are going through this hell.
“Can you imagine that a member of the Access Bank staff told me that they can use court processes to hold us down for 25 years and that by the time they are done, our money will no longer have any value and most of the people who are involved would have died? Somebody should tell Access Bank that we are not playing their game anymore! We are not going to wait for 25 years. We will not wait for 25 months or 25 weeks or 25 days. This appears to be what they do to many of their innocent customers. They kill them and get away with it. It has now become a culture. People should tell them that they have now taken on the wrong guys. They will not get away with it with the musicians of Nigeria. We want our money now.
“For close to four years, they played the music and we danced. Now, we will play the music and they will dance. They want to turn the Court of justice to the Court of injustice and make Nigerian people a laughing-stock. It will not work with us. If they want peace, we will give them peace but if they want war, they will experience war without end. We will make the movie and they will watch. We will keep them awake all day and all night and even if they ever close their eyes, they will keep seeing us in their dreams. Enough of all this nonsense going on in Nigeria!”