There has been a silent war since the beginning of the year between Nigerian singer, Runtown and his record label, Eric Manny Records – a silent war that has just broken out into open warfare.
A Federal High Court sitting in Lagos has directed popular Nigerian musician, Douglas Jack-Agu a.k.a Runtown from performing at any event or any form of recording for the time being unless with the approval of his record label, Ericmany Limited who presently holds the copyright to all his music.
Eric Manny Records, owned by billionaire businessman, Okwudili Umenyiora, got a court injunction seeking to stop Runtown from performing as an artiste, amongst other things, pending the determination of the suit because Runtown signs up, concludes and attends musical shows without the knowledge of the label.
A source in the record label who spoke anonymously to a correspondent said, “After Eric Manny invested millions of naira in Runtown, he started colluding with his manager Bugwu Aneto, who also doubles as the general manager of Eric Manny, to sideline the label from money collected for shows.”
The injunction obtained at a Federal High Court prevents Runtown from performing at any event or any form of recording for the time being unless with the approval of his label.
It was gathered that trouble started when Runtown, apparently with the connivance of Bug Media ran by one Bugwu Aneto, began to sideline Ericmany and collect money directly for shows without the knowledge of the label. Bug Media is also a party to the court case.
Ericmany has also sacked Bugwu Aneto as the General Manager of the company, for infractions which might not be unconnected with his alleged connivance with Runtown to shortchange the label. Runtown was allegedly misled by Bugwu, to ditch his boss and benefactor, Ericmany.
However, close sources in Runtown’s camp told ADELOVE that “the label has been cheating Runtown of his money, they don’t give him his share of show performances, caller tunes and more but the boy has been keeping quiet about it all along till they threatened him with a lawsuit despite the fact that the label has no structure.”
Meanwhile, in response to the court injunction, Runtown reportedly got his lawyers to review his record deal and clauses in it which gives him the right to terminate his contract at a court of arbitration.
In his letter to the label, Runtown claims threat to life, extortion and lack of payment/royalties from performances, ringback tunes and more as reasons for terminating the contract.