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We Need Regional Body To Combat Illicit Trade

Written by Thursday, 04 May 2017 08:25 Published in Brand Protection 0

 

Uganda National Bureau of Standards (UNBS) inspectors supervising the loading of imported substandard goods 

at Rodolo Customs Bond in Mbale recently. Dr John Akoten, the acting executive director of the Kenya Anti-

Counterfeit Agency believes East Africa should be able to work together to kick-out counterfeit goods from the region. FILE PHOTO

By Jonathan Adengo

 

Briefly tell us what counterfeits are?

Counterfeits are an infringement of intellectual property. All the intellectual property such as trademarks and copy rights are used by somebody in the course of business without the authority of the owner are found to be counterfeits. They are goods which mimic the original product. 

The underlining factor is that the mark has to be registered by an institution. For example in Kenya there is the Kenya Intellectual Property Institution. Here there is Uganda Registration Service Bureau and for the international one, we have the World Intellectual Property Organisation.

Why do people go into counterfeits?

Basically, when you look at counterfeits, people are undercutting each other. It is a kind of trade where unscrupulous business do not want to follow the law but want that product to be associated with a particular name. These products, which in most cases are substandard, want to ride on the success of a known brand so that they can sell. 

Counterfeiting is done on fast moving consumer goods which are selling. There is no body who can counterfeit a product which is not selling. Apart from goods, it also crosses to the service sector.

You have been in Uganda giving a keynote speech on counterfeits affecting trade. What were your experiences like regarding the fight against counterfeits at the event?

Counterfeiting is a development matter. As economies grow and try to find a niche in the international market some businesses engage in counterfeiting and you find that most of the counterfeit goods come from the Asian countries. And when they are exporting these goods they look for markets where intellectual property laws are weak, and enforcement laws are weak. You therefore find that quite a number of these goods come to Africa, and particularly to East Africa. 

We need to understand that counterfeiting has very serious effects to the economy, to the government because governments usually lose revenue. The people engaged in counterfeiting also engage in other illegal activities such as selling substandard goods and money laundering. The private sector is also affected because somebody else is eating into their factory share. 

The consumers do not get value for money because the goods don’t last long and have a safety impact; the goods are harmful to their health. In the motor industry where we have counterfeit tyres, thereby putting road users at a risk. 

Each and every country is looking at growing their foreign direct investments and these are going to countries that have strong intellectual property laws. 

As members of East Africa we should be able to work together to kick-out these goods from our economy. We will be able to encourage the local industries to grow and come up with innovative ideas and as such from intellectual property we can make money.

How far has Kenya gone in the fight against counterfeits?

In Kenya we have made some strides. We started with an Anti-counterfeit Act of 2008 that was passed some time back, and then the Agency was born in 2010. 

The law has given us powers to investigate issues of counterfeiting as well as coordinate with other institutions involved in combating illicit trade. We have officers everywhere who have been made inspectors for purposes of investigating issues of counterfeit. 

We have a number of other government institutions who have been empowered to investigate issues of illicit trade and facilitate coordination. 

Other than the anti-counterfeit act, because of the nature of illicit trade which has an impact on the security, we have elevated it to a national level where it is regarded as a security matter because the people involved in counterfeiting are also the same people involved in terrorism, money laundering and so much more. 

We have elevated it to a level where we are looking at it in terms of security. We have a border control committee that constitutes a number of institutions like immigration, police, institution dealing with plant variety and many other government institutions. 

To ensure that the policies and directions passed by these committee are implement we have border patrol committees at our key border points where they will be able to impound any goods entering the Kenya borders. 

Those are impressive steps. What can an economy such as Uganda borrow from Kenya in this fight?

Uganda should borrow from Kenya and look at the issue of illicit trade as a high security matter. On the issue of the anti-counterfeit act, we were able to identify the loopholes in the act. Uganda should borrow from the experience of Kenya especially on the issue of the fines. The law gives us a lower limit that says the fine has to be at least three times the value of the goods. 

There is also need to use technology to fight counterfeits because perpetrators are producing counterfeits which are almost hard to identify by the consumers, so we should use technology to help the consumers identify the counterfeit goods.

What’s your opinion about the steps being taken in the war against counterfeits in the greater East Africa?

We are moving in the right direction. We have been able to have meetings with Interpol where we have been carrying out raids in East and Southern Africa. As a region we can partner together to have focused raids on particular sectors and can be done frequently. 

When we work with those international institutions such as Interpol then we also have coordination between government institutions and also the private sector then we can try to reduce on the level of counterfeits. We also need to have public awareness where we educate consumers about the dangers of counterfeit and illicit trade. Once the public understands the dangers of counterfeit trade then they will be able to avoid it. We also need to tackle the issue of demand because without demand these unscrupulous people cannot engage in this trade which can be done through public awareness.

Are there combined efforts in the East African Community to fight counterfeits? If such efforts are there, what are they?

The only thing that we have done at regional level is on the issue of public awareness where we have been discussing issues. We have been having meetings under the auspices of the US government. We still need to have additional steps so that we ensure that all this coordination is able to be done at regional level. 

In Kenya we have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Tanzania Fair Competition Commission, to be able to coordinate issues of illicit trade across the border. We are also signing an MoU with Ethiopia and Turkey and locally with the manufacturers to see how we can address the issue of counterfeit.

Any challenges in this fight?

One of the major challenges is finance. Fighting counterfeits requires a lot of finance to create public awareness and building capacity. Going to every part of the country can also be very expensive. 

Enforcement also requires a lot of resources because you need to have an intensive intelligence network and facilitate movement s of the officers across the country. Adjudication still needs a lot of sensitisation among the judiciary because some of them do not understand how serious the issue of counterfeits is affecting the economy.

As a region, what must we do to fight and win this war on counterfeits?

We need to have a regional law that will be able to guide these member countries to harmonise the intellectual property regime. Once we have that harmonised regime any intellectual property registered in Uganda can be enforced in Kenya and vice versa. It will also allow sharing of data across the countries thereby allowing coordination.

Dr John Akoten says

We also need to have a regional coordination body that will be able to coordinate at the national level to ensure that we can work together to combat illicit trade in general. We already have an East African Counterfeit Bill. 

http://www.monitor.co.ug/Business/Prosper/We-need-regional-body-to-combat-illicit-trade/688616-3910812-ikagfqz/index.html

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8th December , 2016

After a series of assessment, the Uganda National Bureau of Standards (UNBS) has recognised 5 laboratories to provide product testing services aimed at easing doing business in Uganda.

This implies that the laboratories are competent to test and issue results that may be used by UNBS in product certification and its other regulatory activities in a bid to reduce the workload in the institution’s laboratories and consequently making trade faster and smoother.

The move is in line with the UNBS Laboratory Recognition Scheme established to ensure that laboratories outside UNBS scope or privately owned are recognised at the national level to do product testing.

It is also in tandem with the drive at the East African Community level where other competent laboratories can be used for testing of products and the accruing results are recognised as legitimate and authentic.

The recognised laboratories include; Chemiphar Uganda, Uganda Industrial Research Institute (UIRI), SMAT Uganda limited, Roofings (U) Ltd and RECO Industries.

Speaking at the recognition ceremony, the UNBS Executive Director Dr, Ben Manyindo said: “These are some of the initiatives UNBS is undertaking to increase the capacity of the institution to ensure fair trade through standards”.

He added that as the economy grows the demand for laboratory services increases hence the need for partnerships to address the issue of quality and safety through testing of our local products.

Laboratories’ take

Meanwhile, the recognised laboratories lauded UNBS for the initiative pledging to closely collaborate to ensure better service delivery.

“As Chemiphar Uganda, we are accredited internationally however, it’s an added advantage if we are recognised at the national level for better collaboration,” says the CEO, Ms Annick Uytterhaegen,

Similarly, the Laboratory Manager of SMAT Uganda limited  Simon Kisitu says this being a unique field, we have also been asked to present a recognition certificate which UNBS has now established”

About Laboratory Recognition Scheme

In accordance with the East African Community (EAC) Standardization, Quality Assurance, Metrology and Testing Act, 2006, the Council of Ministers made the Regulations on designating testing laboratories, and these were gazetted on the 6th day of December 2013. This designation of Laboratories is to enable easy access by the private sector to testing services recognised across the region and thereby facilitate cross-border trade.  These Regulations may be cited as the East African Community Standardisation, Quality Assurance, Metrology and Testing (Designation of Testing Laboratories) Regulations, 2013.

In line with the above, UNBS under its management systems certification is implementing a Laboratory Recognition Scheme that is aimed at expanding the country’s testing capacity to increase access to competent testing facilities and facilitate the product certification process.

When samples are tested in other laboratories, there is need to ensure that the laboratory test results are recognised by ensuring that the laboratories operate a quality management system based on the International Standard ISO/IEC 17025. 

The UNBS under this scheme identified, trained and evaluated laboratories on the requirements and implementation of ISO/IEC 17025.

Courtesy of: https://www.unbs.go.ug//news-highlights.php?news=23&read

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The Government Analytical Laboratory is a Directorate under the Ministry of Internal Affairs that provides specialized analytical and advisory services to Government departments responsible for the administration of justice. 

The Government Analytical Laboratory helps government to provide and ensure internal security through increased use of scientific evidence based investigations. The directorate in its day to day operations is guided by various pieces of legislation which include but not limited to the Fire Arms Act cap 299, the Evidence Act cap 6, the Magistrates Courts’ Act cap 16, the National Drug Policy and Authority act cap 206, the National Bureau of Standards act and the Adulteration of Produce Act cap 27 etc. 

The Scientific investigations conducted by the Government Analytical Laboratory are important in the security and safety of the person and property. The Government Analytical Laboratory is a strategic stakeholder in supporting the monitoring and enforcement of quality assurance in value chain additions.

This is important to product owners as well as the consumers in the fight against counterfeit products because the Directorate is a stake holder in ensuring that the quality of the products of the manufacturer are maintained through aiding law enforcement agencies to determine what is counterfeit and what isn’t through carrying out independent analysis of the exhibits brought to the Directorate from Police for testing and generating an analytical report. 

This according to section 103(1) of the Magistrates courts act is admissible as evidence.

This report is what would corroborate the assertions of the product owner that what has been recovered is counterfeit.

 The state prosecutors in various jurisdictions across the country always insist on having the government analytical report attached on the police case file before it is sanctioned for the suspect to appear in court over the charges of counterfeiting of trademarks.

The challenge with taking counterfeit products to the Directorate is that there is only one Government analytical laboratory located at Wandegeya in Kampala in the Central region of the country.

The fact that there is only one Laboratory of its kind presents a challenge to law enforcement in the country because all cases concerning counterfeits arising from other parts of the country that will require analysis will all have to be done at the Wandegeya lab.

Case officers have to incur costs to travel all the way from up country stations like Adjumani, Moroto, Gulu, Arua, Kabale, Busia and Elegu to Kampala in Wandegeya and deliver samples of the counterfeits recovered so that they can be analyzed in order to complete investigations.

The question of the safety of these exhibits also arises as unforeseen circumstances like road accidents may occur leading to there destruction as they are being transported from up country to Kampala for tests which ends up fundamentally jeopardizing the case when in court as there will be no exhibits to identify and tender in as evidence against the accused counterfeiter.

In addition to the long distances traveled and the costs incurred, the Directorate is also overwhelmed by many cases from law enforcement agencies all requiring analytical reports and these have created a case backlog at the Directorate.

The solution to the above challenges is to open up regional Government Analytical laboratories which are well staffed and well funded. This will help to reduce on the distance traveled and costs incurred by the officers to simply bring exhibits to Kampala.

The issue of case backlog at the Directorate shall also have been solved with the setting up of these new regional centers.

We can have a government Analytical laboratory in Mbale which is fully funded, well staffed and operational unlike the one which was launched a few years back which is non operational, to serve the Eastern region, one in Gulu to serve the Northern and North Eastern region, one in Arua to serve the West Nile region, we can have one in Hoima to serve the western region and another in Mbarara to serve the south western part of the country. 

Davis Ngonde,

LLB (MUK), Dip. LP LDC 

 

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Fake Goods On Rise Due to Quality Mark Counterfeits

Written by Thursday, 27 October 2016 11:59 Published in Brand Protection 0

Fake goods on rise due to quality mark counterfeits

Written by Justus Lyatuu

Nearly half of the imports coming into Uganda should not be in supermarkets, or any other shop for that matter; rather, at the bottom of a garbage pit, with official figures showing that many products are not fit for consumption.

Andrew Othieno, the manager, import inspection at the Uganda National Bureau of Standards, confirmed to The Observer that at least 40 per cent of the imports into Uganda do not meet the official national standards.

He named cosmetics, building materials such as cement and iron bars, electronic cables, as some of the goods that dominate the list of substandard products entering Uganda.

While most of these goods are being smuggled into the country, a new dubious mechanism is being employed by the traders, mostly those from China - falsifying the quality mark (Q-mark).

“We have had consignments of sanitary pads and batteries confiscated at our borders. This is something we have our eyes on; if they have done it, it means that they can do it again,” he said.

He added: “Some of these [quality] marks have been easy to make especially with this advanced technology, but as they try to forge, we are also going to use new technologies to fight the vice,” he said.

Othieno was speaking to importers and local manufacturers at a consultative meeting on enforcement of compulsory standards regulation.

The high number of substandard goods in the market and the forgery of quality marks is a serious concern that goes right at the heart of the health of consumers.

As part of the solution, UNBS has placed more attention on rolling out a new quality mark with distinct inbuilt security features and codes that a consumer can be able to detect using a phone.

“If you have a smart phone, there will be a code and those with ordinary phones will be able to send an SMS to UNBS and our database with tell you if the commodity is genuine or not,” Othieno said.

Patricia Ejalu, the acting executive director, UNBS, said there will be new policy reforms by January next year.

“Come January, all goods leaving factories must have the Q-Mark before they are placed on the market,” she said.

She explained that Ugandan products with the Q-Mark will not be subjected to an inspection and testing within the East African Community (EAC).

Ejalu added: “Products without the mark are usually subjected to inspections and testing at the border and would not be released before compliance is ascertained, something that would cause delays for the owners.”

According to Martin Imalingat, an official from UNBS, local manufacturers will pay Shs 100,000 for an application for a quality mark, and Shs 1.5 million as an audit fee. Foreign companies will pay $3,000 plus an air ticket because inspections will be done from the country of origin.

Courtesy of: http://www.observer.ug/business/38-business/47177-fake-goods-on-rise-due-to-quality-mark-counterfeits

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How To Register Trademarks In Uganda

Written by Friday, 16 September 2016 12:42 Published in Brand Protection 0

Registration of Trademarks in Uganda is governed by the Trademarks Act 2010 and the Trademark Regulations 2012. 

The registration is done at Georgian house in Uganda, Kampala at the Uganda Registration Services Bureau.

Before embarking on the process of registration of a trademark, the person wishing to register the trademark must first of all establish whether the mark has protectable subject matter.

A Trademark is said to have a protectable subject matter where the mark is capable of distinguishing Goods or services of one undertaking from those of other undertakings or if the mark is not inherently capable of distinguishing the relevant goods or services, then it has acquired this distinctiveness through use, and the mark should be capable of graphical representation in order to be registered.

After establishing that the mark, sign or combination of both has protectable subject matter, then you can go ahead to make an application for its registration as a trademark.

Highlights of the process for registration of trademarks

  • you will have to first pay a non refundable application fee for registration of around 15 U.S Dollars.
  • You will then be given Form TM 2 for application for registration which shall contain a representation of the mark and form TM 3 on which you will affix at least four additional representations of the mark corresponding to that affixed to form TM 2
  • you will then have to pay a non refundable search fee of 8 U.S Dollars in order to have the registrar conduct a search
  • Upon receipt of the application and proof of payment for both the application and the search, the registrar shall cause a search to be made among the registered marks and those pending registration for the purpose of ascertaining whether the mark seeking to be registered is already registered by a different owner or whether there is an identical mark similar to the mark seeking to be registered and this is for the purpose of finding out whether the mark is free to be registered or not.
  • After the search, the registrar may accept the application absolutely, object to the application or accept the application subject to such conditions or amendments
  • If the registrar accepts the application subject to any conditions, amendments, disclaimer, modifications or limitations, the registrar shall communicate the acceptable to the applicant in writing.
  • If the application is allowed absolutely or subject to conditions or limitations, the registrar shall cause the application to be published in the gazette upon paying a sum of around 60 dollars which is the gazette fee.
  • As soon as possible after the expiration of sixty days from the date of the advertisement in the gazette, the registrar shall, subject to any opposition as to the registration of the trademark and upon payment of the prescribed fee which is around 30 dollars, enter the trademark in the register.
  • Upon registration, the registrar shall issue to the applicant a certificate of registration.

These are some, not all the steps you will have to take to register your trademark as it is quiet a long process and this is were we at brand guard can help our clients who want to register there trademarks, with this process as this is one of the services we offer to our clients.

We also help our clients to renew and also certify their trademark documents because registration is for a period of seven years and renewal shall be done every ten years upon payment of a prescribed fee. Certification is done for evidential purposes especially for court related matters.

Davis Ngonde,

LLB, Dip.LP.LDC

 

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Registration Bureau To Tackle Copyright Law Bottlenecks

Written by Friday, 16 September 2016 09:57 Published in Brand Protection 0

The Uganda Registration Services Bureau is working on a programme to address the low understanding of the copyrights law in the country

Prime Minister Ruhakana Rugunda (right), permanent secretary in the Ministry of Gender Pius Bigirimana (centre) and his wife, Elizabeth, launch a book at Sheraton Kampala Hotel early this year. PHOTO BY ERIC DOMINIC BUKENYA

By Jonathan Adengo

Kampala.

The Uganda Registration Services Bureau is working on a programme to address the low understanding of the copyrights law in the country.

According to Ms Fiona Bayiga, the director Intellectual property at URSB, among some of the suggestions by the URSB directorate, is amending the law to focus on areas that need to be changed to reflect on the needs of the moment.

“Consultations have not yet begun because we have to start the process of procuring the consultant first. I cannot talk about what amendments, but we shall be looking at what the users would like to have,” Ms Bayiga said yesterday during a workshop at the offices in Kampala.

The understanding of copyright laws have been low on account of low level of awareness of the intellectual property and laws being too complicated for the common man to understand.

“There are artistes in Uganda who are earning much less than they should be able to earn from their work. This is the first with the copy right area but we shall move out to the regions as well,” Ms Jane Okot P’Bitek Langoya, the deputy registrar general of URSB, said.

Mr James Wasula, the chief executive officer of the Uganda Performing Rights Society, said the sensitisation workshop has been long overdue for the artistes.

“We have people carrying titles that they don’t understand what they mean,” he said.

Mr Wasula welcomed the amendment of the property right law and also increased sensitisation of the masses to promote a clear understanding of the law.

“This is the beginning of putting things in the right directions,” he said.

Other artistes such as Mr Francis Mutesasira of the Sauti ya Africa music group, said people do not understand the Intellectual Property Rights law and as such many have lost money to promoters who make money off their work.

Among the challenges facing the low Intellectual Property Rights uptake has been the high costs being charged by the gazette to have the musicians and performers gazette their show.

Mr Bayiga says they charge Shs50,000 to register a copyright, but the gazettes charge Shs450,000 to have it advertised, a cost for the public.

Ms Langoya says the bureau has seen an increase in people registering their businesses due to the Competitiveness and Enterprise Development Project, a government/World Bank-funded project.

“Through the project, we were able to decentralise the registration process for businesses and patents. For instance, the people who operate in downtown who were afraid of coming to Amamu House to register their businesses all now go the new points at Posta house and Nakivubo which have also worked a lot in reducing the queues at the head office,” she said.

We have also gone into the electronic document management system which will digitise all records, making it easy for people to transact online from the comfort of your office. It will not matter which part of the country you’re in. The bureau is also planning to set up a one-stop centre for business registration,” Ms Langoya says.

Extend Upcountry

At the moment, URSB is mainly operating in Kampala but the government has provided money to open up registration bureaus in 34 municipalities around the country. “We are moving out and by the end of this year we should have covered all those. This year, we are mainly concentrating on sensitisation and we are targeting up country areas as well,” Ms Langoya says. 

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EVIDENCE THAT IS REQUIRED BY COURTS OF LAW WHEN HANDLING TRADEMARK RELATED OFFENCES.

The rules of evidence which govern the use of documentary evidence in court revolve around the best evidence rule. This is a rule that holds an original copy of a document as superior evidence. The rule specifies that secondary evidence such as a copy will not be admissible if an original document exists and can be obtained.

Therefore in any court of judicature where a party intends to rely on a document, the document itself must be produced in court.

The best evidence rule is found in sec. 61 of the evidence act cap 6 and is known as Primary evidence which means that the document itself be produced in court for inspection.

Under the evidence act cap 6, documents are classified into two groups’ i.e. public documents and private documents.

Documents like the certificates of registration of trademarks are private documents and fit the definition of private documents as per sec 74 of the evidence act.

When dealing with documentary evidence in regards to trademark offences, you will normally have to produce an original copy of the certificate of registration of the trademark for courts inspection to prove that actually your mark is indeed registered as a trademark in order to comply with sec.61 of the evidence act.

However, this doesn’t mean that if you don’t have the original copy of the certificate of registration of the trademark, you can't rely on other documentary evidence to prove registration.

Like all general rules, the best evidence rule/primary evidence has exceptions to it and these exceptions can be found in sec.64 of the evidence act.

One of the exceptions which can be relied on by those seeking to enforce trademarks in Uganda especially for criminal offences committed against trademarks is where the original is a document of which a certified copy is permitted by the evidence act or by any other law in force in Uganda, to be given as evidence.

Sec. 69(1) of the trademarks act 2010 provides for certified copies of any entry onto the register of trademarks to be admitted in evidence in all courts and in all proceedings, without further proof or production of the original.

This is what is mainly done by most state attorneys’ who are prosecuting trademark offences. They will normally ask for certified copies of the certificate of registration of the trademark in order to tender it in as evidence instead of asking for the original document.

HOW CERTIFICATION IS DONE

Certification of trademark documents can be done at Uganda Registration Services Bureau at Georgian house in Kampala.

The fees to be paid will differ depending on the type of trademark. If the trademark is a foreign trademark, then one will be required to pay 40 US Dollars to have it certified and if it is a local trademark, one will be required to pay about 10 US Dollars for it to be certified.

Here at BrandGuard ltd, we do help our clients to carry out this process of certifying there trademark documents at a fee.

Davis Ngonde,

LLB, Advocate of the High Court.

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Police Unit To Enforce Copyright Law Launched

Written by Wednesday, 13 July 2016 15:09 Published in Brand Protection 0

POLICE UNIT TO ENFORCE COPYRIGHT LAW

The initiative, born out of a partnership between URSB, the Uganda Police Force and the Uganda Federation of Movie Industry (UFMI), will implement the copyright law which has been in existence since 2006 but with no enforcement

 

Artistes march ahead of signing of a memorandum of understanding to enforce the copyright law in Kampala on Friday. PHOTO BY MICHAEL KAKUMIRIZI 

By Emmanuel Ainebyoona

Kampala.

Government has agreed to form a police unit to crackdown on copyright fraudsters.

The unit will be in charge of arresting people who infringe on intellectual property, including patents, trademarks and copyright, created by musicians, artists, authors and other innovators.

At the same time, the Uganda Registration Services Bureau (URSB) launched a hologram, a symbol which will be used by Collective Management Organisations and police to identify and differentiate original audio-visual products from pirated ones.

The initiative, born out of a partnership between URSB, the Uganda Police Force and the Uganda Federation of Movie Industry (UFMI), will implement the copyright law which has been in existence since 2006 but with no enforcement.

Speaking at the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding to establish the Intellectual Property Enforcement Unit in Kampala on Friday, the Minister of Justice and Constitutional Affairs, Maj Gen Kahinda Otafiire, said government is responsible for administering intellectual property issues.

“When you go to downtown Kampala, you find good-for-nothing fellows benefiting from the sweat of creators. You will find Chameleon’s (Joseph Mayanja) songs on Compact Discs being sold by individuals who make a lot of money yet the creator is getting nothing,’” Maj Gen Otafiire said.

He added that an effectively enforced intellectual property infrastructure is necessary to ensure the stimulation of investment in innovation and to avoid commercial-scale intellectual property rights infringements. 

Mr Bemanya Twebaze, the registrar general at USRB, said enforcement of copyright law will lead to creation of employment opportunities and also widen the tax base through revenue collection.

Inspector General of Police Kale Kayihura, who was represented by the director of human rights and legal services, Mr Erasmus Twaruhuka, promised to educate police officers and the public on the importance of respecting creative works.

Mr Bonny Kasujja, the director of UFMI, welcomed the creation of the enforcement unit, saying they will ensure no audio-visual works are consumed for free.

“Time has come for those who have been pirating our work to approach us and get proper work, by buying it to encourage us create more,” Andrew Benon Kibuka, head of the Federation of Performing Artists.

Source http://www.monitor.co.ug/News/National/Police-unit-to-enforce-copyright-law/-/688334/3257188/-/10gwbdvz/-/index.html

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How to Register Copyrights in Uganda

Written by Tuesday, 05 July 2016 16:42 Published in Brand Protection 0

Registration of copyrights and neighbouring rights in Uganda is governed by the Copyright and Neighbouring Rights Act 2010 and the Copyright and Neighbouring Rights Regulations 2010.
The registration is done by the Registrar of Copyrights who is located at Georgian House in Kampala at the Uganda Registration Services Bureau.

Highlights of the 6-step process for registration of Copyrights and Neighbouring Rights:

  • The applicant shall fill Form 1 specified in the 2nd schedule of the Regulations. Form 1 shall be accompanied by a deposit consisting of copies or records representing the work for which registration is applied. The work may be published or unpublished.
  • The applicant is required to pay a non-refundable fee of about 15 US Dollars for each application.
  • Upon receipt of the application, the Registrar shall cause the application to be published in the gazette specified in Form 2 of the 2nd schedule. About 60 US Dollars is charged for gazetting the application.
  • Where after 60 days from the date of publication of the application in the gazette, there is no objection lodged against the registration, and the Registrar is satisfied that all the necessary information has been provided by the applicant, the Registrar shall enter the name of the applicant in the register as the author or owner of the copyright or neighbouring right.
  • Upon registration, the applicant shall be issued with a certificate of registration as proof of registration.
  • The form of the certificate of registration is specified in Form 3 of the 2nd schedule to these Regulations.

Some of the timelines may vary significantly hence the need for a service provider conversant with the process. At BrandGuard we provide such expertise with ease.
Davis Ngonde
LLB, Dip.LP.LDC


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