By TEMILADE ENIOLA
Popular Nigerian artiste, Zeez (formerly known as DJ Zeez) is now caught in a legal dilemma after a Lagos High Court ordered him to refund over N22 Million to his record label, HF Music.
HF Music is the same label that houses fast-rising Pop artiste, BigLittle and run by Lagos Island business man, Akeem Farm.
The presiding judge, Honourable Justice B.A. Oke-Lawal (Mrs) in the case brought before the High Court of Lagos State, ordered that Zeez, real name – Kingsley Elikpo, should refund the sum of N22,378,605.70 (Twenty-Two Million, Three Hundred and Seventy-Eight Thousand, Six Hundred and Five Naira and Seventy Kobo) being the total amount spent by HF Music through various advances made to and on his behalf, from the commencement date of his contract with the label until the point when it was breached by him.
Sources close to the beleaguered artist said that he is now preparing to file an appeal against the judgement.
This judgment is expected to have serious implication on the Nigerian music industry, as record label owners and investors can now feel safe investing in artistes, knowing that their investment is protected by the law. On the other hand, artistes are now expected to sit-up and take their contractual obligations more serious, knowing that breaching their contract might turn out to be a career ending move.
Both HF Music and Zeez are yet to make any official statement on the issue.