Alas, Oladele Olubakin, Esq has finally instituted an action against the Incorporated Trustees of the NBA, President of the NBA, A.B. Mahmoud SAN and Abiola Olagunju in suit no: FHC/ABJ/CS/240/18 at the Federal High Court, Abuja.
The writ which was issued by Amah Kalu Kalu of Falana chambers sought for the following reliefs to wit: A declaration that the plaintiff is the true and beneficial owner of the portrait of his excellency, President Buhari presented by the defendants on the 21st of December, 2017;
a declaration that the exhibition and presentation of the pliantiff’s portrait by the defendants without his consent, assignment or license amounts to a violation of the plaintiff’s right to his intellectual property;
a declarion that the conversion of the plaintiff’s artwork by the 1st, 2nd amd 3rd defendants is illegal as it violtates the plaintiff’s right to own property as enshrined under Section 43 of the 1999 constitution as amended and Article 14 of the African Charter on Human and People’s Right; an order directing the defendants to pay over to the plaintiff, jointly and severally the sum of N75, 000, 000 (Seventy Five million Naira) being the open market value of the plaintiff’s portrait;
an order directing the defendants jointly and severally to pay over to the plaintiff the sum of N50, 000, 000 (fifty million naira) only, as damages for the infringement of plaintiff’s intellectual property in the portrait; an order directing the defendants to pay over the plaintiff jointly and severally the sum of N500, 000, 000 (Five Hundred Million Naira) as general, exemplary and punitive damages for the violation of the plaintiff’s intellectual property rights in the portrait;
an order directing the 1st, 2nd and 3rd defendants to issue a statement recognizing the plaintiff as the true owner and creator of the portrait; and tendering an unreservered apology for the infringement of his intellectual property rights;
and to cause the statement to be published in 2 national dailies; an order restraining the defendants and their agents from taking out any disciplinary action against the plaintiff to further violate his right of ownership and/or intimate him from the enforcememt of his claim to the portraiture which is the subject matter of his suit; interest at rate of 10% per annum on the judgement sum until same is fully liquated.
TheNigerialawyer recalls that the plaintiff had earlier accused the NBA of presenting his portrait of the president as a gift without his consent. Following the allegation, a source from the NBA disclosed that the allegation is not true since the portrait was given to the NBA as gift and nothing more. However, the NBA had threatened disciplinary actions against the plaintiff for his unethical actions.The writ so issued now shows clearly that both parties are not ready for a out-of court settlement.