Bemanya Twebaze.

Uganda’s Bemanya Twebaze has been named among the 50 most influential people in Intellectual Property (IP) in 2021.

Intellectual Property (IP) refers to creations of the mind, such as inventions; literary and artistic works; designs; and symbols, names and images used in commerce. The four types of IP are copyrights, patents, trademarks, and trade secrets.

The list was compiled by Managing IP, a B2B site uncovering in-house intellectual property strategy and distilling it into actionable intelligence for lawyers globally.

According to Managing IP, Twebaze, made it to their list because of the way he quickly transformed the African Regional Intellectual Property Organization (ARIPO).

Twebaze was appointed as the director general of ARIPO in January 2021.

“He makes it onto our list this year because of his short but impressive tenure. ARIPO successfully held a diplomatic conference for adopting a regional voluntary copyright registration and notification system in August. The need for a protocol governing such a system was first brought up during the 40th session of the administrative council held in Harare, Zimbabwe, in 2016,” the magazine said in the report issued on Wednesday, December 1.

“The member states finally adopted The Kampala Protocol on Voluntary Registration of Copyright and Related Rights on August 28 in Kampala, the capital of Uganda,” they added.

According to the publication, ARIPO also welcomed some new additions this year; Gambia joined the Banjul Protocol on Marks on May 3, and the Republic of Seychelles became the 21st member state to join ARIPO on October 1.

The regional organisation also saw enhanced collaboration with WIPO this year, in terms of events and joint workshops.

“All of these developments suggest an increased appreciation for Africa’s IP regime under Twebaze’s leadership. Before joining ARIPO, Twebaze had a successful career as the registrar general and the official receiver of the Uganda Registration Services Bureau,” they said.

“With a little over three years remaining of Twebaze’s term at ARIPO, we can expect many more positive changes to Africa’s IP landscape,” they added.

Twebaze on Thursday, 02 December 2021 said he was humbled by the recognition.

Twebaze holds a Bachelor of Laws, awarded by Makerere University. He also holds a Diploma in Legal Practice from the Law Development Centre. His Master of Business Administration was obtained from the Eastern and Southern African Management Institute.