Posted by News Express | 30 April 2019 | 1,507 times
Veteran entertainment journalist, Uzo I. Chikere has fired back at Efe Omorogbe, Manager of 2Face Idibia, demanding a total sum of N600 million in damages for Intimidation.
Uzo is also accusing the artiste manager of attempting to gag him as a journalist and sullying his professional image and reputation.
In a letter from Chikere’s lawyer, Onyilo S. Paul Esq, in response to Efe Omorogbe’s lawyer Ugochukwu Nwenyi informing Mr. Chikere, of the intention of Mr. Omorogbe to sue him for damages of 200 Million Naira for libel, Efe Omorogbe himself has been given seven days to take some actions or face a new law suit from Uzo Chikere for publications on on several media platforms casting aspersions on the professionalism of Mr. Chikere and his character.
The actions are: an admission to the truth of the allegation in Uzo I. Chikere’s article, “Bombshell!!! How Efe Omorogbe Collected 9 Million Naira Interest-Free Loan from COSON in 2 Months, Desperate to Take Control” published in www.beats-onit.com; tendered public written apology addressed to Mr. Chikere and his employer, Full Time Media Limited, for deliberately trying to controvert the truth told by Mr. Chikere; payment of N100 million as General Damages for causing business inconveniences to Full Time Media Ltd; payment of the sum of N500 million to Mr. Uzo I. Chikere for bringing him under intimidation, attempting to gag him as a journalist and sullying his professional image and reputation.
In the letter, Mr. Chikere’s lawyer wrote:
“Bordering on the allegation of Nine Million Naira interest-free loan allegedly obtained by your client from COSON, we have the firm instruction of our client to state on his behalf that the allegation, prima facie stands to be true and justifiable as his source has furnished his office with the respective documentary evidence to substantially back up his stance. Meanwhile he stated further that, his publication is to the effect that a cheque of N4,000,000.00 (Four Million Naira) was made out to your client in the name of his owned business, NOW MUSIK ENCORE LTD on 31st day of March 2016. And barely two months later, on the 3rd day of June 2016, your client asked for another interest-free loan of N5,000,000.00 (Five Million Naira) which was collected his by brother, Osarhieman Omoregbe, and that whether the above facts are true or not is a matter of evidence which our client makes bold to say that he can substantiate through whatever legal means is acceptable to Nigerian Law.”
Referring to the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Resolution 59 of the United Nations General Assembly as well as Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (1984) which provides that “Fundamental Right to Freedom of Expression encompasses the freedom to seek, receive, disseminate and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers”, Mr. Onyilo S. Paul stated that the philosophy underpinning the qualified privilege of the press is that openness and transparency are desirable in matters of such public importance, thus the media or its stakeholders should not be hindered or gagged from reporting honestly on such issues.
Said Mr. Onyilo, “In a nutshell, our Client enjoys qualified privilege for the release of the alleged publication in the fact that he has the professional, social and moral duty to report issues no matter whose ox is gored.”
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