Cultural advocate, Isha Antoine-Andrews was last Saturday unanimously elected as the new Director for Grenada on the Eastern Caribbean Collective Organisation for Music Rights Board of Directors by the local membership.
She replaces Elwin McQuilkin, the Wizard who sat on the Board since ECCO was established in 2009.
Antoine-Andrews is now responsible for advocating for and on behalf of the membership and at the same time increase Grenada’s membership in the organisation.
The election was the highlight of the 3rd Annual General Meeting of the Eastern Caribbean Collective Organisation for Music Rights (ECCO) Inc, which was held under the theme ‘Monetising the Musical Experience with Accelerated Growth’.
The meeting was held in St. Lucia but members outside that territory were able to participate in the session by on-line conferencing technology.
The membership in Grenada met and utilised the facility at the University of the West Indies School of Continuing Studies.
ECCO reported on the achievement of a 27% growth in licensing revenue (mainly from its operations in The Commonwealth of Dominica & St. Lucia) and its achievement of a reduction in administrative expenses during the same 2011 accounting period.
This achievement, which has enabled the organisation to double the distributable revenue due to its more than 400 members and affiliates to over $400,000 was roundly applauded by members at the meeting.
However, members were adamant that ECCO should speed up legal action against unlicensed music users especially the electronic media which owe the society over a million dollars in outstanding royalties.
This echoed the sentiments of ECCO’s umbrella organization, the International Confederation of Authors and Composers Societies (CISAC) (www.cisac.org) which in a recent audit of ECCO expressed surprise at the low level of lawsuits the organisation had outstanding
Members also voiced great concern in several other areas including the low level of airplay of national and regional music, the continuing scourge of music piracy and the low level of awareness of intellectual property rights.
Members called on ECCO to seek partnerships with state institutions in the OECS such as the Ministries with responsibility for Tourism, Heritage and Creative Industries, Trade and Investment, Technology, Education, Intellectual Property and Legal Affairs to work on joint ventures to address these challenges.
Apart from Antoine-Andrews, the other members of the new Board of Directors of ECCO are McCarthy Marie (Commonwealth of Dominica), Joffre Venner (St Vincent & the Grenadines), Eustace Crispin d’Auvergne (St. Lucia), Gandolph St Claire (St. Lucia), Francis De Lima (St. Lucia), Gaspar Llewellyn Gill (St. Lucia) and
Ian Sanchez (St. Lucia).
The 1st meeting of the new Board is scheduled for July 22 in St. Lucia.
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