Veteran novelist Aaron Chiundura Moyo on Friday raided pirates who were selling his books from the streets in Harare. Chiundura Moyo said he would engage the police this week and make sure the culprits are brought to book. “The unfortunate part of the story is that I had no police officers with me so I could not take the law into my hands,” explained the renowned author.He took several copies of his books, saying it was painful.
“What pained me is that they wanted to sell the books to me. They don’t know me but they are selling my works,” he said.
The Copyright law in Zimbabwe does not allow piracy, yet pirated products have flooded the streets across Zimbabwe.
It seems the law enforcement agents have been lenient to the offenders as they end up paying fines.
Unlike South Africa under the Copyright Act of 1978, criminal copyright infringement can land offenders in jail for up to five years and results in a fine of up to R10 000.
Chiundura Moyo said he wanted to meet the Minister of Rural Development, Preservation and Promotion of Culture, Cde Abednigo Sibanda over the matter.
The author who made his name through several books and plays said the development of literature in the country was under siege.
With piracy we are not going anywhere. We need to unite as artists as well as publishers to fight,” he said.
For him the fight is not for the authors only but the publishers should come on board to deal with the piracy.
“What makes the situation pathetic is that you see the photocopied books on the streets and these guys shamelessly display them.
“The best move is for the publishers to engage authorities so that they can fight this evil,” he said.
Some of the works that have earned the author fame and respect in the industry are “Uchandifungawo” (novel, 1975, Mambo Press), “Ziva Kwawakabva” (novel, 1976, Longman), “Nhamo Ine Nharo” (novel, 1978, Rhodesia Literature Bureau), “Wakandicheka Nerakagomara” (novel, 1982, Mambo Press) and “Chenga Ose” (play, 1982, Mambo Press).
He also did “Kuridza Ngoma Nedemo” (play, 1983, ZPH), “Matekenyapfungwa” (quiz book, 1984, Books for Africa), “Nguwo Dzouswa” (novel, 1985, Mambo Press), “Yaive Hondo” (novel, 1985, Mambo Press) and “Wandibaya Panyama Nhete” (play, 1986, Longman)”.
Furthermore, on the list are publications “Ndabvazera” (novel, 1992, Mercury Press), “Chemera Mudundundu” (novel, 2002, Priority Publishing), “Pane Nyaya” (play, 2004, Priority Publishing), “The Other Side of The River” (short story collection, 2012, Lion Press) and Kereke Inofa (play, 2012, Book Love).