Nascam operating without policies for 26 years

WINDHOEK: The Namibian Society of Composers and Authors of Music (Nascam) has been operating for 26 years without any operational policies.

Speaking at Nascam’s open day here on Thursday, its new Chief Executive Officer, Albert Nicanor expressed discontent over the lack of policies and technical capacity to implement its mandate over the years, resulting in many local artists being unhappy with the institution’s leadership.

Nascam collects royalties fees for its 8 064 member artists as per the Copyright and Neighbouring Rights Protection Act 6 of 1994 aimed at protecting and promoting copyright and ensuring fair numeration.

‘For 26 years the institution has had no document available such as a strategic plan and an annual budget. If you want to spend on something at Nascam it was just like, ‘Let’s spend.’ The current status is very critical in that a lot of things have to be established as if they are new,’ he stressed.

Nicanor, who has been in office for five months, further explained that most of Nascam’
s employees did have signed employment contracts in place and circumstances surrounding those with purported employment contract ‘old contracts’ are not entirely clear, resulting in possibilities that some individuals may have altered their employment contracts and were receiving remunerations that were never approved by the board.

At the same event, Nascam board chairperson Sulaiman Kayababa stressed that more than 10 boards led Nascam in the past, without implementing any policy.

This, he said, has led the current board appointed in April 2022 to decide to have the annual bonuses discontinued and instead introduce a performance management system to help the organization to evaluate employee’s performance objectively and provide them with constructive feedback on how to improve their skills and achieve the company goals.

Legendary musician Ras Sheehama has called for the current leadership to dismantle Nascam’s current operational process to establish new systems and policies geared towards the betterment
of artists.

‘Most of us artists here don’t understand the law of copyright because of our education level, therefore artists trust Nascam to collect their money,’ he stressed.

Nascam collected N.dollars 2 million in royalties fees of which N.dollars 152 000 was paid to 65 sister international societies, noting only 1 200 members received royalties.

A total of 2 000 broadcasters are registered with Nascam.

Source: The Namibia Press Agency