KAMPALA, Uganda: This is in rejoinder to the lawsuit filed by singer Richard Kaweesa claiming how the Head of State, Gen. Yoweri Kaguta Museveni had plagiarized his song and turned it into his campaign hit.
President Museveni unleashed the controversial hit a.k.a “Mpa Enkoni” during the 2011 presidential campaigns. The song did the trick. Museveni defeated his perennial adversary Dr. Warren Kiiza Besigye Kifeefe besides a host of other rivals.
Kaweesa filed the case at the commercial section of the High Court on March 11th this year, accusing the President of acquiring a copyright to it without his (Kaweesa’s) authorization and consent. The R&B singer had written to the President demanding Ushs500m in compensation. But the son of Mzee Kaguta ignored the request.
Kaweesa was not amused. He dashed to court for redress. The Court’s Deputy Registrar Festo Nsenga upon receipt of the complaint wrote to the President giving him 15 days to respond to the legal onslaught by Kaweesa.
Museveni’s lawyers of Kampala Associated Advocates (KAA) have filed his response today. In the response, Museveni rejects all the claims brought against him. He maintains that he commissioned the song himself and that he has since obtained a copyright over it.
He further rejects insinuations by Kaweesa that he could have arm-twisted the Uganda Registration Bureau Services (URSB) into registering him as the owner of the song. Museveni argues on other hand how he cannot be sued being the sitting President. He accordingly asks court to reject the lawsuit.
Alert to the legal hurdle as pointed out by Museveni, Kaweesa had before going to court asked Kaguta to do him a favor and settle the matter amicably in appreciation of his ( Kaweesa’s) efforts as a ‘joint author’ of the song. But Museveni rejected such overtures.
Following an application by Museveni to have Kaweesa’s lawsuit dismissed as incompetent, the court will now convene to listen to arguments for and against the procedural matter and then rule whether to entertain the application or not. We shall keep you posted about the matter.
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