Defamation: Dabiri-Erewa Sues Diamond Bank, Punch, Demands N500m | Independent Newspapers Limited
Newsletter subscribe


Defamation: Dabiri-Erewa Sues Diamond Bank, Punch, Demands N500m

Posted: Aug 6, 2015 at 8:58 pm   /   by   /   comments (0)

By Tunde Opeseitan, Lagos


Former member of House of Representatives, Abike Dabiri-Erewa, on Thursday, August 6, 2015, made good her threat to institute legal proceedings against Diamond Bank for publishing her name among the list of chronic debtors who have refused to liquidate their debts.

Dabiri-Erewa, a journalist, represented Ikorodu Federal Constituency between 2003 and 2015.

In the suit  filed by her lawyer, Adetokunbo Mumuni, before a High Court in Igbosere, Lagos, the plaintiff also listed Punch Newspapers Limited as the second defendant.

The alleged malicious publication against Dabiri-Erewa was published by Punch through a paid advertorial and a news report.

The plaintiff averred that on August 4, 2015,as early as 6am, she got a barrage of phone calls, text messages and information on social media networks telling her about a report in the Punch newspaper of that day with a report that her company, Thriller Endeavours, was indebted to Diamond Bank.

The report was on the front page of the paper, alleging that her company owed the bank N122 million.

Dabiri-Erewa said she was neither a subscriber to the memorandum and article of association of the said Thriller Endeavours nor a director of the company alleged to be owing Diamond Bank.

She also accused Punch newspaper of engaging in mischief when it published her name on pages 1, 21 and 31 of its August 4, 2015 edition as person whose company was indebted to Diamond Bank.

The plaintiff, who is a chieftain of All Progressives Congress (APC), averred further that as a well-known politician, the said publication has subjected her to public opprobrium, ridicule and embarrassment of monumental proportions.

She is seeking N500 million against the defendants jointly and severally as damages for the reputational injury she had suffered, and another declaration that the publication, “which has no foundation in truth,” had defamed and injured her character and made her to suffer reputational damage.

She wants N3 million to be paid as professional fees of her solicitors, and an order directing the defendants separately and jointly to render a public apology to her in respect of the false publication.

The apology, according to the plaintiff, must be published in three national dailies in addition to Punch newspaper.