In the above public notice in today’s newspaper, Music Copyright Society of Kenya (MCSK) states as follows:
“This is to inform the general public that Mr. Dan Maurice Okoth resigned from his position as the Chief Executive Officer of MCSK. Mr. Okoth ceased to be an employee of MCSK from 24th March 2016. He is therefore, not authorized to transact any business in the name of or on behalf of MCSK and that MCSK shall not take responsibility for any transactions made by him”
Okoth has been Chief Executive Officer (CEO) at MCSK for close to a decade and oversaw its growth from a small collective management organisation (CMO) with a handful of members and royalty collections of less than a million shillings to a large regionally respected CMO with over 12,000 members collecting well over a quarter of a million shillings in royalties a year. Therefore this public notice by MCSK will definitely come as a shock to many observers, particularly given the tone and language of the notice itself.
Be it as it may, the writing seems to have been on the wall in light of recent criminal allegations that arose (previously discussed here) implicating Okoth and other members of his Management team. In a letter dated 7th March 2016, MCSK Board of Directors suspended Okoth citing these pending criminal cases in court which the MCSK Board claimed were jeopardizing the CMO’s operations. Okoth later resigned as explained in the public notice.
Perhaps, viewed in this light, some may not be surprised at the notice which seems to suggest that Okoth and his long-time employer have parted ways on less than amicable terms.
For better or worse, MCSK Board of Directors have sent a strong message that they are firmly in control of Kenya’s oldest CMO and the largest one in East and Central Africa. In the same vein, one would ordinarily expect MCSK’s membership to take the queue from its Board and send a strong message of its own to the Directors. This blogger won’t hold his breath on that one – for some of the reasons previously discussed here.
All in all, this public notice is significant and leaves us with many more questions about how MCSK plans to improve its practices, policies and image in the months and years ahead.