Fiji Time: 1:22 PM on Tuesday 25 October

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Plea to end piracy

Tevita Vuibau
Monday, July 28, 2014

THE Copyright Enforcement Unit has called again for all in Fiji to pay honest money for music in the country.

Unit head Terence O'Neill Joyce said piracy was one of the main reasons the Fiji Performing Rights Association was unable to pull together funds in the past to hold their awards nights.

"FPRA gets its licence by public performance licensing to bars, hotels and restaurants. If everybody paid for the music they use FPRA would be able to hold these awards every year," he said.

He said popular bands such as Makare had already come to see him to seek help with piracy and he was also getting help from town councils.

"I started off with Sigatoka and their public administrator Jay Whyte and I said 'look Jay what about you make Sigatoka the first pirate-free town for iTaukei and Hindi local music' and he said 'yup we'll give it a go'.

"So he gathered all the DVD shop owners inside the chambers and he said if you don't do this, you're going to have a problem doing your business licence next year.

"And the same thing happened in Nadi and their administrator Robin Ali told them he won't entertain this, so I put Robin and Jay up on a pedestal and say thank you."

Prime Minister Real Admiral (Ret) Voreqe Bainimarama, in his address at the FPRA awards, said, the government would not give up in the fight against piracy.

"My government has worked closely with the FPRA to enforce the copyright laws on local compositions and end the reign of the pirates," he said.

"It hasn't always been easy and we still have some way to go. But we share a determination to stamp out the intellectual theft that has deprived local composers of the money they deserve and will keep hunting the pirates down."

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