The Power of Music in Fighting Corruption
I go with the stage name, Code Red. I am a musician. Hailing from my country where there is a lot of rot in the government in form of grafts and corrupt malpractices, I decided to record a track which would hit on top politicians and government officials who were involved in embezzling public finds meant for infrastructural projects. Also among my target by producing the track was hitting at the music copyright society which was responsible for collecting money on our behalf from radio stations and other outlets which played our songs and remitting the royalties to us, something that they were failing to do.
Therefore, I produced the song and shot a nice video. I didn’t target anyone specifically, but by exposing the rots that were happening didn’t augur well especially with the music copyright society. A week after the song was released; I started receiving threats from the copyright society.
It is true that other musicians had issues with the way their royalties were being managed and remitted, but because of the fear of reprisal from the society, they kind of feared to stand strong against the vices that were rife and instead kept quiet about the whole issue.
We all Need to Stand together to Fight the Vices in our Society
I was requested to pull out my song and apologize for making what they termed as unsubstantiated claims. I refused to do so even though they threatened to sue me for defamation. That became the start of a war. Deep inside me, I felt that if they went to court, although if investigations would be done and my allegations would reveal the truth of the rot inside the society, there was no way I would win the case because I didn’t believe in the justice system which too appeared to be compromised.
I decided to rally my fans on my side. Through the power of the social media where I had a considerable number of fans, I took my ranting by explaining, how the music industry was dying and denying some talented individuals the chance to advance their musical career because of the rots within the industry. I went on to articulate how collections were done and the millions that was lost within the society all in the while the government did little or nothing to fight the vices
My fans must have heard my message. They responded with a series of attacks through social media. They attacked the officials of the music copyright society as well as the various governmental departments tasked in promoting music and culture.
Responsibility Starts with Each one of Us
As much as these corrupt officials got mad and started threatening my life, the storm seemed unstoppable. This made other musicians realize that we all need to join hands if at all we were to win this war. They realized that I was fighting for the good cause of all and that by joining hand we could win the war.
Therefore, it became clear to the copyright society that they weren’t just fighting me, but all music lovers. As the pressure mounted in, the government didn’t want to get dragged into the issue because it would seem that they were too failing and thus it instructed the anti-graft commission to launch investigations into the claims.
By this time, we had grouped up as musicians and produced another track aimed at pressurizing the government more for quick action. As pressure mounted, the commission appointed decided to hasten their investigation and a report tabled in the parliament six weeks later indicated the grafts cases involved and recommended that the music society should be represented by people who had interest in music such as music, DJ, event organizers etc. The battle was won.