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By Itumeleng Mafisa

Digital Journalist

ANC to advise Ramaphosa not to sign controversial Copyright Amendment Bill – Mbalula

The ANC believes that the Copyright Amendment Bill needs more input from artists.

African National Congress (ANC) secretary-general Fikile Mbalula says the ruling party’s leadership will advise President Cyril Ramaphosa not to sign the controversial Copyright Amendment Bill.

The bill was introduced to Parliament by the Department of Trade and Industry in 2017 in order to modernise South Africa’s copyright laws, which had been in place since 1978.

Opposition parties have, however, have protested against the bill and artists have also said the proposed legislation would weaken copyright regulations and harm their livelihood.

Opposition to bill

Mbalula and other senior ANC members were at a sub-committee gathering of the ANC with the creative industry on Saturday.

“We will advise the president not to sign the Copyright Amendment Bill in doing so we are enjoined by the letter from Yvone Chaka Chaka to the president that explicitly states the same that is pending through consultations,” he said.

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Mbalula said the bill in its current form needed more consultations and this includes the view of people in the creative sector.

“We cannot afford to go ahead and promulgate a price of legislation that one party believes it is grossly unfair it is our considered view that non but the creative sector can best tell what is in the interest of this broad field,” Mbalula said.

South African talent

Mbalula remined those gathered at the meeting that South African artists had played a big role in the struggle for freedom.

He remined the artists that they were important in ensuring the continuing growth of South Africa’s democracy and diversity.

“You carry on your shoulders the burden to define our unique identity and culture as a nation,” Mbalula said.

On a lighter note, Mbalula said he was proud of the contribution of artists and South African music which has gone global.

The ANC secretary-general said despite the claims made by west African countries, Amapiano was born in South Africa.

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