N° 37
November 10, 2003

Producers fill in the inadequacy of the Bumda (Malian Authors Rights Office)

It seems that the Malian producers have understood that they can not expect anything from the Malian Authors Rights Office (Bumda) concerning the struggle against piracy. So they organised to lead seizure operations on the markets of Bamako. Last 29th October, some members of the Malian phonographic producers association (APPM), in collaboration with some agents of the commissariat of the first district led a fructuous operation at the Dabanani, centre of the business and smuggling of the biggest market of Bamako. This operation permitted to seize 3 420 pirated tapes.
In this seizure were found samples of all the success of the two past years.

During this operation, the agents of Amy Kane’s commissariat have also arrested two persons very active in piracy. After having been well grilled, they denounced two of their accomplices who are now in jail. Moreover, this denunciation permitted to arrest a man who had a huge lot of tapes covers of Malian artists. Caught red handed, he also denounced his accomplices who are today actively searched by the policemen. According to the pirate, the tapes covers are from Nigeria and have been ordered by shopkeepers (sincere confession or attempt to confuse the issue?). The officers in charge of the investigation are working to go back to the source. We can be sure that a lot of people will fell during the inquiry; and not the least because this operation has surely shaken all the network of the piracy. Those who are pulling the strings in the shadow not feel in security any more and for this reason, they are trying to corrupt people in order to stop the enquiry. They allow themselves such things because they don’t know the pugnacity of the commissary Amy Kane who has already broken up lot of mafia and armed bandits’ networks. As long as the affair will be at her level, producers can be confident but the problem will be at the level of the transfer because all the action undertaken to stop piracy have mysteriously failed with at the justice court. Some magistrates say that they are ready to take back the seized tapes, so the proofs for large commissions.

We remember that before the action of the producers, the Bumda have made similar operation at the Dabanani (One of Bamako market). The police made an inquiry and collected lot of concrete proofs against the pirates they had arrested. Put in jail, they have been curiously granted parole the day after; the real actors of the network had passed there. This time, producers will be more prudent and their ambition is to have the best attorneys of the country by their side to stand on the roads of the pirates’ accomplices at the court.

The success of the APPM is the proof of the incompetence of the Bumda which is always hiding behind the lack of resources (logistical, financial and humane) to justify their inefficiency. The producers have demonstrated that with very few means, but a strong will to fight against the scourge, it is possible to have good result. Moreover the Bumda has seized only about a thousand tapes in one day though the producers have seized in a hour and a half 3 420 pirated tapes and two gangsters who are denouncing all their accomplices.
As we can see, the struggle against piracy is led only by producers and the minister of culture Cheick Oumar Sissoko. And yet, this struggle is not only cultural. The repression needs the collaboration of the departments of justice, security, economy and finances. This is why it is necessary to create an inter-ministerial commission against piracy of artistic works; a scourge that makes the public funds lost billions and condemns the authors to misery. As it was done for corruption, the importance of piracy should push the authorities to appoint a magistrate especially to fight this scourge. Unfortunately, this is not for soon because the struggle against piracy is present in speeches but not in the actions.

The editorial staff

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