Rapper and singer, Kirani Ayat, has revealed that no agency has any rights over his intellectual property.
According to him, the Ghana Tourism Authority (GTA) did not seek permission before using elements of his song, ‘Guda,’ in the “Visit Ghana” campaign through a “bespoke creative agency”, as indicated by the Authority.
Ayat noted that there’s no agency agreement to the best of his knowledge, neither was the name of the supposed agency revealed in the agreement. Likewise, he stated that the Ghana Tourism Authority has also not been given any right to use his video for any of its promotional materials.
“In response to the statement issued this morning by the Ghana Tourism Authority, I, Kirani Ayat, would like to categorically state that no agency has any rights whatsoever to my intellectual property. I have not given rights to any agency to use my likeness or work on my behalf.”Kirani Ayat
As an independent artist and sole owner of the video used in the ‘visit Ghana’ ad campaign, Ayat iterated that he has no “agreement with any government or private entity to use my intellectual property”. He underscored that the agency in question needs to be named, and signed documents made publicly available that “demonstrate clearly, when, where and under whose authority the supposed agreement” was signed.
GTA denies claims of plagiarism
Earlier, the Ghana Tourism Authority (GTA) dismissed claims that some footage used for the new tourism promotional video which features President Akufo-Addo was plagiarized.
In a press statement, the Authority stated that it procured the footage Kirani Ayat is claiming ownership of legitimately from a creative agency in 2019 as part of a project.
The Authority noted that “according to Clause 2 (b) of the MOU signed with the Agency (Obligations: Responsibility of the Agency)”, the Agency was to “deliver imaginative and impactful social strategies, such as content or documentaries for the use of GTA as it so wishes”.
The GTA stated that the agency delivered the content to the Authority, and the Authority used the content in accordance with the terms of the MOU.
“This video has thus been played several times locally and internationally without any issue. The content was used in accordance with the terms agreed with the agency and not as being alleged.”Ghana Tourism Authority
President Akufo-Addo, on Tuesday, September 28, 2022, was accused of using Ayat’s work without permission or credit to advertise the country to tourists. Kirani Ayat stated that he reached out to the government for support before shooting his Guda music video but he was turned down.
The video was shot in northern Ghana and features scenic views and showcases the local culture.
“The President of Ghana has used my video ‘Guda’ in this ad to promote Ghana. I was actively reaching out to the Ministry of Tourism in 2018/19 to use this video to push tourism in the North and got no reply, yet today it’s in an ad and no one reached out to me for permission”.Kirani Ayat