The Kano State Governor, Abdullahi Ganduje has filed a N3 billion lawsuit against Jaafar Jaafar, publisher of Daily Nigerian newspaper for alleged defamation over publications of videos clips showing the governor collecting bribes in hard currency from a contractor.
In the writ of summons obtained by Premium Times in the suit filed at a Kano State High Court on November 13, counsel to the governor, Nuruddeen Ayagi, demanded the defendants to appear before the court within 14 days.
The counsel prayed the court to declare that “the act of publishing and circulating libelous statements, false and doctored video clips attacking and impugning the character and integrity of the plaintiff amounts to defamation of character of the plaintiff by the defendants and thus wrongful.”
Mr Ayagi also asked the court to outrightly declare that unqualified imputation of theft, fraud, corruption and dishonesty which are all criminal offenses by the defendant’s publication against the plaintiff without any conviction by a court of law, “is slanderous, libelous, injurious and wrongful.”
The governor’s lawyer also prayed the court to further grant the following: “An order of perpetual injunction restraining the defendants from further publishing the said defamatory story and sharing the said doctored video clips howsoever to whichever type of audience.”
“An order compelling the defendant to pay the plaintiff the sum of N3, 000,000,000 ( Three Billion Naira) as damages for the defamation of the plaintiff character and standing.
“An order compelling the defendants to write a public apology to the plaintiff and broadcast such apology through their online platforms and news media with global accessibility.”
In a statement of oath sworn at the High Court registry, Kano and attached to the writ of summons, Mr Ganduje claimed that as royal prince of Ganduje village and seasoned administrator, he has never been accused or indicted for fraud or any other corrupt practices.
The governor stated that “As a responsible senior citizen, the publications of the defendants have hurt my image, impugned my character and lowered my esteem in the estimation of all reasonable persons.”
Daily Nigerian has reported Mr Jaafar saying his lawyers would study the process and respond appropriately after he and the company are duly served.