Metro FM joins 'Peoples Poet' and others in campaign

ZAHARA'S successful CD, Loliwe, is reported to have sold as many as 350,000 copies - but millions are said to have been sold illegally on the streets.

This has deprived one of the country's most successful musicians in recent years of royalties running into millions, thanks to the syndicates that manufacture and sell illegal CDs.

But, encouragingly, the industry and authorities are not giving up in the piracy war and there are signs of a concerted effort to strike it down.

One of SA's most popular radio stations, Metro FM, recently pledged to join the nation's anti-piracy campaign with the weapons at its disposal.

In a movement that has been gathering momentum over the past few months, the addition of Metro FM with its legions of listeners has given the artistic anti-crime initiative targeting the manufacturers and merchants of bootleg CDs and DVDs valued additional muscle.

The commitment to join the project was made by the producers of Metro FM's Touch-Down Afternoon Drive Show, when they had hosted the People's Poet - Mzwakhe Mbuli - just before Christmas at their studios in Auckland Park.

The topic of the show - music piracy - was discussed at length and Mzwakhe explained how pervasive and severe the problem had suddenly become.

A case in point was the mass piracy of the multiple-award winning Zahara CD.

The syndicates behind this insidious piracy had gone to the frightening length of issuing death threats to TK Nciza of TS Records for opposing them.

Metro FM has joined the South African Police Services, Airco, Department of Trade and Industry and Operation Artists Partnership against Piracy and a legion of national bodies that are lining up to fight for this cause.