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Judgement handed down in UUCSA trademark case

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The Pretoria high court has ordered that a Port Elizabeth based organisation operating under the name of the United Ulama Council of South Africa (UUCSA) does not have claims to the trademark. The judgement follows a three year long fight between the Johannesburg based ulema organisation called UUCSA and what was known as the ‘fake UUCSA’, under the elusive Maulana AS Desai from PE. Maulana Desai was accused of having “hijacked” the UUCSA name in a bid to undermine the work of the Johannesburg organisation.

The PE based UUCSA registered the name in 2013 and this resulted in the legal action to have the name removed from the registrar of trademarks on the basis that the ‘fake UUCSA’ has no claim to the name and was in bad faith.

The judgement handed down on Friday states that the ‘fake UUCSA’ had no bona fide claim to its proprietorship of the trademark.

According to the judge, the mark was registered in bad faith and directed the registrar of trademarks to expunge the trademark from the register. The PE ulema organisation was also ordered to
pay all legal costs of the Johannesburg based UUCSA.
“It’s important that the issue is resolved as for the past for years the Muslim community was confused by the registration of my clients name by another organisation that sought to do so purely as a incidence of identity theft and because of a difference of opinion between us and them,” said attorney Junaid Hussain, representing the Johannesburg based UUCSA.

“So I’m glad this had been clarified by the courts and the genuine UUCSA can continue the good work that it’s always been doing in its name.”

Having launched in 1994, the Johannesburg based organisation has been using the UUCSA name uncontested for 20 years. But having failed to register their name with the Registrar of Trademarks upon their launch, UUCSA suddenly came under threat in 2013, when the name was usurped by Maulana AS Desai. The legitimate UUCSA has accused the ‘fraudulent’ groups of attempting to expand the voice of extremism, by issuing a host of controversial statements in UUCSA’s name.

According to Maulana Sulaiman Patel, his organization received a letter on the 27th May 2013, warning them to desist from using the name, as it had legally been trademarked. He said that they were further cautioned from ‘masquerading’ under the UUCSA banner. At that stage, Maulana Desai subsequently came out to admit that he had been behind the registration of the name. VOC

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1 comment

  1. It’s obvious that the fundamental building blocks of these Maulanas weren’t spared by the demands of evolution! Do they have nothing better to do?
    Why don’t these Maulanas get for themselves real jobs like everyone else?
    This is how it goes when there is no Taṣawwuf.

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