Famous Nigerian comedian and skit maker Chukwuemeka Emmanuel, better known as Oga Sabinus, has set the internet agog after his management slammed a one billion naira suit against Friesland Campina WAMCO Nigeria PLC for unauthorised use of his trademark ‘something hooge.
The Rivers State-born comedian also demanded the sum of N100m from UAC Foods for using his animated image in an advert for the Gala sausage roll.
Speaking with PREMIUM TIMES on Monday, Nwabufo Micheal, Oga Sabinus’ manager, said that contrary to news making the rounds, the comedian did not sue the companies.
The talent manager said his talent management agency sued the companies on behalf of the comedian.
” Sabinus is not the one demanding the money; it is the management requesting the money. I used to be in the modelling industry. Sometimes, a brand will use a model for three years without paying anything for them.”
“There is no way the brands will not still come to me because I manage the best of the best content creators; people should stop tackling Sabinus and face the management that sued the companies.”
Mr Micheal also said the lawsuit is not about individual talent but for everyone who benefits from the skit-making industry.
” It’s time to hold the brands that use our materials without any form of compensation, payment, or a contract agreement knowing full well that intellectual property theft and infringement is a punishable offences by the law. I and my entire team, “Mike Premium Talent Management”, will chase this particular offence to the end,” he said.
The talent manager said he is seeking justice for his client Mr Sabinus and has sent the necessary letters through his lawyers.
Through its lawyer, Stanley Alike, the talent management agency filed a legal notice against Friesland Foods Wamco Nigeria Plc, the producers of Peak milk, for the unauthorised usage of Mr Sabinus’ trademark phrase “something hooge” to advertise their products.
Friesland Foods Wamco Nigeria Plc, in an Instagram post on May 24, used the phrase ‘something hooge’ to advertise their product.
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Mr Alieke, in the legal notice, stated that the phrase ‘Something Hooge’ was Oga Sabinus’ registered trademark and, therefore, demanded N1 billion in compensation and damages.
He shared an e-copy of the legal notice with this newspaper on Monday.
The legal notice also stated that the talent agency would take legal actions if the brand failed to comply within two weeks of receiving the legal information.
The legal notice read in part: “Our client briefed us, and we believe the same to be true that your Company, Friesland Foods Wamco Nigeria Plc, used a trademarked slogan ‘Something Hooge’ for the promotion of your Peak Milk product,”
It continued: “The advert made on the Peak Milk Nigeria verified Instagram page (peak_milk) was posted on the 24th day of May 2022, which was used to promote the Peak National Breakfast Week.
“It will interest you to know that the phrase ‘something hooge, which is our client’s popularised trademarked and legally reserved as his intellectual property by the Federal Ministry of Trade and Investment
“The said slogan was trademarked on the 26th of November 2021 with the file number: NG/TM/O/2021/48316. 10. On this note, we demand the payment of Five Hundred Million Naira (N500m) as compensation for the unauthorised use of the intellectual property belonging to our client.”
“And another five hundred million Naira for damages for the trauma; emotional, physical, psychological, and mental trauma our client has suffered for the Trademark theft and infringement of his intellectual property rights.”
In another legal notice dated May 25, 2022, Mr Alieke, the talent agency’s lawyer, also demanded a sum of N100m from UAC Foods for using an animated image of Oga Sabinus in an advert for the Gala sausage roll.
To drive a campaign on their social media page, the company posted an animation of Oga Sabinus on their Instagram page last Wednesday.
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