'Samro owes me money for royalties'

Edward Tsumele

Edward Tsumele

Top music composer Qhalane Mofokeng is embroiled in a bitter row with the South African Music Rights Organisation over unpaid royalties.

At the centre of the row are allegations by Mofokeng against Samro concerning a theme jingle he composed for SABC1 as part of a campaign on missing children.

The theme song, for Missing Kids, was flighted by the SABC between 2004 and 2006.

Samro has vehemently denied the allegations and maintains that the composer has been paid every cent due to him.

"The royalties that came forth were not a true reflection of the amount of airplay the song acquired," Mofokeng said.

"In fact, Samro erroneously paid out royalties due to me to some overseas composers.

"When I went to lodge a query with them ... it surfaced that they had paid out my royalties to the wrong composers."

Samro spokesman Yavi Madurai said: "We made a mistake by allocating the money due to him to the overseas composers. That we agree. But we rectified the matter and paid the correct royalties to the right person, and that is Mofokeng. This has been fully explained to him."

Madurai showed Sowetan some print-outs of royalties paid to Mofokeng - two amounts, R16448 and about R2000.

"We recently held several meetings to explain how the system of royalties operates but he just exploded," Madurai said.