The Audio Visual Society of Ghana (ARSOG) is set to distribute over GHC 1m to its members across the country as the society’s payment out of the blank levy imposed by government on importers of recording devices. This is one of the outcomes of the annual retreat by the Board of the collection management organization for film makers in Ghana.
According to Richard Prempeh the Chairman of the board, they decided to share those levy and royalties to its members since that is their due. He called on other film producers who have not yet registered with ARSOG to do so to enable them to receive royalties and also to ensure protection for their works.
In all the 210 members will receive a total of GHC 1,313,372.43 of which GHC GHC 1, 280, 714.30 is the blank levy component and GHC 32,657.13 is from royalty collections . Mr Prempeh indicated that later in the year there will be further distributions to the members. He was quick to add that eventually, all players in the industry will receive royalties due them in line with the stipulations of the law in which case not only producers will receive royalties but performers and authors as well.
Explaining the basis for the distribution, Augustine Abbey aka Idikoko, a board member explained that in all 1,674 units of movies were used for the distributions for the blank levy based on a cut-off point of 30 movies for each member.
For the royalty distribution Idikoko said no cut off point was used so 1,795 units were used for the distribution. He said the royalties were collected from hotels, transporters and other areas.
As part of efforts to ensure prompt payment by users, ARSOG will arrest and prosecute defaulters to serve as a deterrent to prospective defaulters. In this regard, ARSOG will be working with the professional associations like the beauticians association, barbers and similar professions and trades where the works its members are used to collect the revenue due ARSOG from their members.
Meanwhile, ARSOG has appointed regional supervisors to ensure that collections in the regions are effectively done and issues regarding ARSOG are adequately addressed. They are:
- Western Region – John Abeiku Sagoe, Yaw Afrifa
- Greater Accra – Samuel Odoi Mensah and Richard Quartey
- Central Region – Steve Asare Hackman
- Volta Region Mr Socrate Safo
- Eastern Region – Ashangbor Akwetey Kanyi
- Ashanti – James Aboagye
- A – Stanley Sackey
- Northern Region – Augustine Abbey
Since their appointment the regional supervisors have all visited and interacted with players in the industry in the various regions.
In a related development, ARSOG has signed MOUs with two organisations, Alsbridge Company Ltd and Big Foot. The two companies would pay royalties on behalf of transport operators and be responsible for the screening of films on vehicles. They would also pay Producers for the films to be shown.
In addition, the two companies would pay for the registration and annual royalties for the number of buses that would register with them and would be supplied with stickers for these buses to identify them to inspectors from ARSOG. Buses still showing films without the ARSOG sticker in the windscreens would be arrested and prosecuted.