Chibok Girls: Nigerian lawyer sues leading US newspaper, demands $11 million

Posted by News Express | 14 April 2019 | 1,757 times

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•The litigant, Emmanuel Ogebe

Nigerian international human rights lawyer Emmanuel Ogebe has launched a multi-million dollar lawsuit against leading United States newspaper The Wall Street Journal, and its publishers, Dow Jones Company. 

Ogebe, a resident of Springfield in the Commonwealth of Virginia, USA, is demanding total monetary damages of $11 million, among other reliefs, for an alleged false and defamatory article against his person. 

US Court papers dated April 10, 2019 sighted by News Express showed that Ogebe, who is well known for his humanitarian work especially with regard to the freed Chibok girls, is seeking six reliefs, namely: 

(1) compensatory damages of​ not less ​than $10,000,000.00;

(2) punitive damages of not less than$1,000,000.00;

(3) all expenses and costs, including attorneys’ fees;

(4) an apology to be published in various global media of plaintiff’s choosing

(5) an injunction restraining defendants from further defamatory publications against the plaintiff

(6) such other and further relief as the court deems appropriate.

The Wall Street Journal, according to the court papers, published the false and defamatory article about Mr. Ogebe on April 13, 2018 on its website and in its print edition of the newspaper, entitled, “The American Ordeal of the Boko Haram Schoolgirls”.

Joined in the suit as defendants are Drew Hinshaw, a Senior Reporter for The Wall Street Journal. Hinshaw, who allegedly authored and published the defamatory article that tarnished Mr. Ogebe’s image; Joe Parkinson, the Africa Bureau Chief for The Wall Street Journal, who allegedly participated in the writing of the article; and Gbenga Akingbule, one of the newspaper’s journalists who also allegedly participated in writing the defamatory article.

The plaintiff alleged that the defendants’ purpose in publishing the article was to weave a narrative that depicted the plaintiff as a callous, exploitative, celebrity groupie who was not really assisting victims of terror and was falsely advocating for persecuted Christians and was rather advancing only his “political agenda.”

He complained that the offending article “was itself sensation-seeking and obnoxious in its description of the schoolgirls as “the Boko Haram girls” in its ordinary meaning, interpretation and understanding, conveying they belong to or are owned by the terrorist group Boko Haram. Its synopsis stated that plaintiff held fund raisers for the girls, which funds disappeared while he hobnobbed with the high and mighty. The article was craftily contrived to portray plaintiff in the most injurious light.”



Source: News Express

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