MTN In Passing Off Brand Legal Mess

As a result of the alleged passing off of his works, a comedian based in Lagos, and trading under the name and style of Mayphem International, Femi Edwards has initiated an action against MTN Communications Limited.

The telecommunications firm was dragged before Justice Chuka Obiozor of a Federal High Court sitting at Ikoyi, Lagos State, Nigeria.

Edwards in his statement of claim before the judge alleged that in 2009, he started a platform that promotes the comedy industry called ‘komicRELOADED’

According to the claimant, he rebranded to ‘Comedy+’ in 2010 and had since maintained the brand with sales outlets across the whole of the territory of Nigeria.

Edwards further informed the court that he had engaged in numerous comedy and general entertainment production, promotion and marketing activities under the ‘Comedy+brand over the years.

The plaintiff alleged that on March 17, 2017, MTN launched a digital platform where it advertised the intent to continue to wrongfully produce, promote, market and pass off comedy shows and other entertainment not produced, promoted and marketed by the plaintiff as and for the comedy and other entertainment shows produced, promoted and marketed by the plaintiff.

While adding that the alleged act and conduct of the defendant were calculated to deceive and mislead the general public, Edwards insisted that MTN profited itself from the passing off of the services and product of the excess of N112.5 billion as presently known to the plaintiff until search, discovery and inspection.

The plaintiff consequently asked the judge to restrain the defendant and its agents from producing and marketing the plaintiff ‘s brand.

Edwards also asked the court to award damages in his favour.

But in its defence, MTN denied almost all the averment of the plaintiff.

The matter has been adjourned until May 9, 2018 for hearing.

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