…Demands N1b Damages
By Our Correspondent
The Senator representing Kaduna Central Senatorial Zone, Senator Lawal Adamu Usman has written Leadership Newspapers, demanding immediate retraction of what he termed libelous and defamatory fake news recently published.
The lawmaker also filed for damages in the sum of N1,000,000,000 (One Billion Naira Only) against the Newspapers for publishing the fake news, which he said was targeted to tarnish his image and reputation.
A copy of the letter of demand to the Leadership Newspapers by Senator Lawal Adamu Usman through his solicitors Messrs E. N. Ogbu & Associates as obtained by our correspondent reads in part: “we are Solicitors and Advocates of the Supreme Court of Nigeria, whose services have been retained by SENATOR LAWAL ADAMU USMAN to be further referred to as our “Client” having been strictly briefed to the effect that our Client’s attention has been drawn to a malicious newspaper publication caused by you on LEADERSHIP NEWSPAPERS dailies of 12th July, 2023 and captioned: “KADUNA SENATOR USED MY RESULT FOR VARSITY ADMISSION, WITNESS TELLS TRIBUNAL.”
The letter further stated; “According to our Client, the malicious contents of the said newspaper publication portrayed him as one,who made illegal and fraudulent use of a certificate belonging to one HALIMA IBRAHIM NDANUSA to gain admission into a university and further went on in the reportage to add that the said HALIMA IBRAHIM NDANUSA made the said piece of malicious information known in an appearance at the Election Petitions Tribunal while seeking for justice and prosecution of the offenders for using her results fraudulently as captured in Paragraphs 1, 2, and 10 of the online publication made available to us by our Client.”
“The said HALIMA IBRAHIM NDANUSA was neither subpoenaed nor present at the tribunal as confirmed by our correspondent.”
The Senator’s solicitors also stated that “our Client is of the firm contention that the veracity or otherwise of the entire reportage captioned herein are proceedings of a Tribunal,which are available to the general public as it relates to what transpired before the Tribunal in actual fact. Again, as unfair as the reportage could be, our Client was never called upon to hear his own version of what actually transpired.
“However, the procedure to obtain this facts were thrown to the wind with respect to the reportage in itself as same, according to our Client were a calculated effort to wickedly dent an image and status earned over the years by dint of hard work.”
“Our Client has suffered emotional and psychological trauma over the “fake news” printed to dent his hard earned reputation in the eyes of the public over an information that is not only false but inexistent.
“And to make matters worst ,same unscrupulous information were carried by THISDAY NEWSPAPERS, a widely circulated media house in Nigeria and abroad without authenticating same in the first place. An action our Client considers severely damaging as no amount of money may remedy the humiliation and damage caused to his reputation as a result of the said reckless publication.
“The Nigerian Government has times without numbers strictly warned the generality of the public against spreading what is now known to be “fake news.”
“TAKE NOTICE that if after 7 (seven) days of your receipt of this letter you fail, omit, refuse, and/or neglect to strictly act as follows:
(i) Formally retract the said libelous piece of information, which our Client considers defamatory of his person in your newspaper publication (online inclusive) and 2 (two) other National Dailies (online inclusive),
(ii) Formally apologize to our Client in writing with respect to the malicious piece of information carried by you on LEADERSHIP NEWSPAPERS which our Client considers defamatory of his person, and:
(iii) Pay unto our Client or unto us on behalf of our Client the sum of N1,000,000,000.00 (One Billion Naira Only) as damages for the said defamatory piece of information/fake news made by you on the platform of LEADERSHIP NEWSPAPERS against our Client; We shall have no further recourse to you and equally not hesitate to commence legal actions with a view to pressing home our Client’s demands.
Be warned! The letter reads.