Frasha, Gabu and Bon’Eye, the three men that make up popular music trio P-Unit, have been threatening to sue Kenya Commercial Bank over the use of the phrase “Weka Weka” in their new savings campaign.
The three, who dropped a mega hit in 2015 dubbed “Weka Weka”, believe they coined the phrase but KCB, through it’s lawyers, said they don’t own the rights because it’s a Swahili word.
On Monday the bank released an official statement denying infringing on the copyright of the group’s hit song.
“The only similarity between your client’s (P-Unit) song ‘Weka Weka’ and KCB’s commercial ‘Weka Weka na KCB M-pesa’ is the phrase, ‘weka weka’,” read a letter addressed to P-Unit from KCB lawyers.
The “Weka Weka na KCB M-Pesa” promotion was launched two months ago. The bank said the promotion isn’t really new but just a continuation of “Weka Weka promotion” originally launched in 2011….yes, four years before P-unit drop their hit.
“On 29th August, 2011, KCB launched a campaign dubbed as ‘Weka Weka promotion’ way before your client released the song ‘Weka Weka’, in 2015. Weka Weka na KCB M-Pesa’ is a continuation of the initial campaign that begun in 2011,” said the bank.
Tell me more…
Though the advert is totally different from the song…flow wise, the message looks pretty similar.
While the bank is encouraging younger guys to save all their pennies, P-unit brags how they are banking a lot of cash from their stage performances…it was 2015, they were big then.
In fact, KCB is really confident the three kinda “borrowed” the concept from them…and now want an apology for their threats.
“It is not an original that an artist can claim to have independently conceived since no one can claim custodianship of a language,” the bank added.
“Your Client cannot therefore ride on the phrase ‘Weka Weka’ for a claim of copyright infringement against KCB as the same is not copyrightable.”