- Chief Olusegun Obasanjo sues Punch Newspapers and its columnist over an article allegedly against him
- Obasanjo seeks N1 billion and a retraction of the article to be published in two newspapers in Nigeria
- The former president also wants the court to stop the newspaper, its allies and everyone related to it from using the article
Former president of Nigeria, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, has filed an alleged defamation suit against Punch Newspapers and one of its columnists, Sonala Olumhense.
Through his lawyer, Kanu Agabi, Obasanjo alleges defamation of character against the newspaper organisation asking the court to take action. He is seeking N1 billion as damages.
The Guardian reports that Agabi said the fact that the constitution guarantees press freedom should not give the media organisation and the columnist the right to defame anyone.
He said: “The article does not constitute a valid exercise by the defendants of their freedom of speech and of expression.”
Through Agabi, the former president is asking for an injunction against the defendants associates, agents, assignees, servants, privies, proxies, and allies “from further publishing or causing to be published the words complained of or any other defamatory words concerning the claimant.”
The report said Obasanjo further requested the court to issue an order to force the defendants to retract the alleged defamatory words on the front page of two national newspapers within three days from the day of the delivery of the judgment of the court.
It was learnt that Femi Falana will represent Olumhense in court.
The opinion, it was reported, was published on January 27, 2019, and in it, Olumhense reportedly wrote: “Obasanjo was no anti-corruption champion either, although nobody harangues corruption better than he. Yes, he launched the EFCC and ICPC, but they fought only the fights he allowed them to and wrote the reports he wanted.
“His real motivation was the largely retaliatory drive to recover the so-called (Sani) Abacha loot against the man who had thrown him behind bars.
“At the end, he could not account for the billions of dollars recovered.”
Legit.ng earlier reported that Femi Falana recently asked citizens of the country to hold the former president of the country, Olusegun Obasanjo, responsible for some challenges in the constitution.
Falana, who spoke at the launch of the minority report written by Professor Olusegun Osoba and Yusufu Bala Usman, argued that the loopholes in the 1979 and 1999 constitutions would have been resolved if Obasanjo was serious.
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