BY MTHANDAZO NYONI
ZIMBABWE is expected to sign the Kampala protocol on voluntary registration of copyright and related rights next week, African Regional Intellectual Property Organisation (Aripo) administration council chairperson Willie Mushayi has said.
The objectives of the protocol include to establish, manage, facilitate and co-ordinate a system for voluntary registration and notification of copyright and related rights; uphold common principles regarding voluntary registration and notification of copyright and related rights; provide copyright holders means of presumption to authorship or ownership of rights; and to ensure that creative industries contribute to the socio-economic development of countries.
The southern African nation was supposed to sign the protocol last Friday during the 18th session of the council of ministers of Aripo but Justice minister Ziyambi Ziyambi could not attend the signing ceremony due to an “emergency”, according to Mushayi.
Only Zambia, Gambia and Namibia signed the protocol.
“Zimbabwe was scheduled to sign the Kampala protocol during this session unfortunately the minister (Ziyambi) was summoned to rush to the capital (Harare) to attend to urgent business matters and he has committed that next week he will sign the same protocol, this time at Aripo headquarters in Harare.
“I will see to it that it’s done properly,” Mushayi, who is also the Companies and Intellectual Property of Zimbabwe chief registrar, said.
On Thursday, outgoing chairperson of the council of ministers, Mawine Diggs, said Africa was the cradle of creativity and through the protocol on voluntary registration of copyright, they hoped to harness “the potential of our creative industries for our economies’ growth and development.”
She said copyright offered an opportunity to secure the value created by authors, singers, filmmakers, computer programmers, and others, in diverse industries including publishing, music, software, art and crafts, advertising and broadcasting, among others.
The protocol will come into force three months after five States have deposited their instruments of ratification or accession.
Mushayi said the 19th session of the council of ministers would be held in Botswana in 2023 while the administrative council would be held in Mozambique in 2022.