Mozale SARL, a company based in Cameroon, and her managing director, Lea Judith Ngayap Monkam, have been found guilty of software copyright infringement by a court in Douala.
Mozale is one of the court cases brought by Sage, a Paris-based multinational company specialising in business management software.
Monkam was ordered to pay 2-million FCFA (about US$4 000 in West African exchange rate) in damages to Sage, as well as 102 225 FCFA (about US$210) in legal costs and a fine of 500 000 FCFA (about US$1 000).
The disgraced boss could face an 18-month jail term if she fails to pay these amounts, the court said.
Software and brand piracy is a global phenomenon with repercussions for software publishers, businesses and national economies, Sage said today in a statement.
All of these groups suffer significant losses due to unfair competition by copyright infringers: destruction of jobs, loss of revenue, impediment to information technology innovation, among others, Dage added.
“In spite of our market leadership, piracy continues to penalise not only Sage and our business, but also the growth of software publishing in Africa and the economic activity that would result from it,” Fabien Poggi, Manager of Sage’s Export division, said.
The rate of software piracy in the Middle East and Africa reached 59% in 2013 and is soaring in countries like Algeria (85%), Cameroon (82%) and Côte d’Ivoire (80%), according to a survey done by the Software Alliance (BSA).
The deeply concerning statistics on the scope of the problem supply the proof.
These court decisions follow a number of campaigns led by Sage, working together with other international publishers, to raise awareness of the issue among institutions, the company said.
At the same time, Sage is informing the public and businesses of the risks associated with using pirated software – whether on computers, mobile devices or in the cloud – and of the need to implement software asset management programs.
By enhancing operational effectiveness, such programs have a direct and positive impact on productivity. Questions on the topic can be directed to Sage at the following address: email@example.com.
Photo: by Neowin