By Jethro Ibileke/Benin
A N10 billion suit has been instituted against the Senate Deputy Whip, Francis Alimikhena, over alleged defamatory publication, at a Benin City High Court.
The claimant, Mr Anamero Dekeri, who was a senatorial aspirant of the All Progressives Congress, APC, also prayed the court for a perpetual injunction restraining the defendant, his agents, privies and/or servants from further publication or spreading of the said defamatory statement.
Alimikhena represents Edo North senatorial district in the National Assembly and won a re-election in the just concluded general polls.
The suit marked B/83/2019 was filed in a Benin City High Court by his solicitors, Olayiwola Afolabi & Co.
The appellant is seeking a declaration of the court that the defendant’s publication in Vanguard newspaper of 24th September, 2018, was misleading, malicious, defamatory and targeted at tarnishing his reputation.
According to him, he had earlier by way of pre-action notice written to the defendant with an appeal to retract the said statement and tender an unreserved public apology.
Alimikhena contested and won a reelection in the just concluded general election.
According to the statement of claim, “The claimant avers that the said newspaper publication engineered by the defendant has seriously injured his credit and seriously lowered his estimation before right thinking members of his business community, his political party members, especially those on the side of the defendant.
“The claimant avers that he had earlier by a way of pre-action notice written to the defendant with an appeal to retract the said statement, tender an unreserved public apology and save the claimant the public embarrassment, but the defendant ignored this and rather wrote back in a derogatory manner to the claimant, threatening to sue for defamation.
“The claimant avers that the statements in the context of the said publication are scandalous, reckless, extremely libelous and defamatory of the claimant and same has injured the character of the claimant.”
Dekeri urged the court to compel Alimikhena to publish a retraction of the said publication and an order awarding the sum of N10 billion as damages for the said defamation.
He is also seeking a perpetual injunction restraining the defendant, his agents, privies and/or servants from further publication or spreading of the said defamatory statement pertaining or referring to the claimant.
No date has been fixed for hearing in the case.