Legal Drama

Are there Privacy Laws in Nigeria? Dr. Sid & Davido’s D’Banj Audio Leak Case

Recently I shared the story and  audio leak published on Netng.com about Mavin Records artist, Dr. Sid, who  is in discussions with an outsider, Davido (HKN Record label and founder) about the now defunct Mo’Hits label. You can read my discussions here.

We have seen a few instances of these kinds of leaks in Nigeria’s Music Industry. For example, who could forget when Ruggedman recorded and leaked his communications with 9ice over the Toni Payne/9ice Marriage Separation Saga? In that instance, Ruggedman felt his back was really against the wall, according to him. There was no way to exonerate him and his family from allegations and threats of harm for allegedly sleeping with Toni Payne. The alleged infidelity was the alleged cause of  the breakup between 9ice and Toni Payne. So, he recorded his conversation with 9ice where he confronts 9ice and that appeared to exonerate him in the public eye.

So, does Nigeria have privacy laws that protect private communications? The answer is yes. There is a fundamental right to privacy under Nigeria’s constitution.

Under the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Part IV Chapter 37, there is a “Right to Private and Family Life” clause.

What Does the Clause say?

“37. The privacy of citizens, their homes, correspondence, telephone conversations and telegraphic communications is hereby guaranteed and protected.

How Nigeria’s courts have interpreted the above clause, I don’t know.

Also, I have searched and reviewed information on Nigeria’s Tort Law to see if a claim of an Invasion of Privacy can be made in situations like these. There is very limited information online on the law specific to that. It may very well exist, but I don’t see it. So, my legal colleagues practicing on the ground can feel free to chime in.

The point of all of this? It is alleged a former staff/employee for Davido is responsible for the leak of the private communications Dr. Sid had with Davido and others. What can Dr. Sid, among others, do? He will have to consult with his lawyer to figure that one out. Suffice it to say: 1) it is unfortunate his communications was leaked to the press; 2) Dr. Sid should not be discussing Mo’Hits/Mavin company business with outsiders.

For label owners (Indie or large record labels), there should be a confidentiality clause in your contracts when you take on new acts. Davido is a young 20year old. Dr. Sid is older and arguably more experienced both inside and outside the entertainment world as a medical professional and now an artist. I fail to see what he hoped to achieve with his discussions with Davido’s crew.

Visit theNetng.com for the latest update on this case.

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