The SABC has started paying its debt to thousands of authors and composers whose music is played on the public broadcaster’s television and radio stations.
By the end of September 2019, the SABC owed the South African Music Rights Organisation (SAMRO) over R160.4 million. Now it has paid 35% of this longstanding debt to the body tasked with collecting royalties and paying them to its more than 19 000 members.
“Honouring their commitment to us reflects their understanding of the importance of paying for their license, which ultimately benefits our members,” said SAMRO’s interim CEO, Ditebogo Modiba.
“This is still a challenge when dealing with some other licensees, and the SABC, despite its financial challenges, has proven to be a positive example in complying with this,” Modiba said. “All of the money received from the SABC will be used to secure the payment of royalties to our members, which is our primary and core function.”
The public broadcaster has committed to honouring monthly payments as agreed with SAMRO and by April 2020, the outstanding debt will be settled in full and current financial year invoices will be up to date.
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