Blitzkrieg pirates of books, music Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi

Stephen Mpofu

THERE is indisputable power in joint operations against any form of legal violations in any and all sectors of a country’s economy and so operations between the police on one hand and those in the book and music industries on the other cannot fail to blitzkrieg once and for all those engaged in rampant pirating of books and music in our country.

In these columns last Saturday, Musaemura Zimunya, a veteran writer, spoke of rampant piracy in the music and book sectors which deprived those legally engaged in those sectors their due monetary benefits.

In support of Zimunya’s statement, Assistant Police Commissioner Paul Nyathi yesterday stressed the need for constant joint operations between the police, the Zimbabwe Music Rights Association (Zimura), writers, publishers, colleges and other educational institutions in order to drive pirates into the shade.

He mentioned that the police and Zimura had previously conducted joint operations against pirates to nip their illegal activities in the bud.

Pirates deprive authors and musicians and all those others engaged in the book and music value chains of what is due to them while the saboteurs go scot-free all the while pushing bellies swollen with what is not rightly due to them.

Workers at some book publishing houses say that pirates photocopy popular books, particularly school textbooks, which they also sell on the streets and for much less than what the publications fetch at bookshops.

Book publishers might also wish to engage, through our diplomatic missions, particularly in the West, to ascertain that books by Zimbabwean authors being sold in the diaspora are distributed or published there under agreement with their Zimbabwean publishers or authors as a safeguard against piracy by Zimbabwean diasporans.

A Zimbabwean male working in Britain is for instance known to have self-published and promoted a book by a relative back home as his own and then built a secondary school back in his home district, all the while claiming when in contact with relatives of the real author of the original book that the school project was sponsored by a British university where he works.

It boggles the mind, or does it not, that a national university could pump out funds for the construction of an educational institution in a country under economic sanctions by its country?

The same man deliberately avoids the book author when on visits home from the diaspora, which raises the question why the avoidance.

Or do other Zimbabwean diasporans not speak ill of their native country to curry favour with their hosts who are opponents of our Government for introducing land reform at independence to reunite our people with the land that foreign colonial settlers had usurped while driving blacks into backyards of their motherland?

Unmitigated patriotism by Zimbabweans living and working abroad will help reverse any hostility by their host governments towards their/our native, beloved country inhabited by people created by God in His image and likeness as He did the diasporan natives. 


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