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Benue: Ortom Slams ₦60bn Defamation Suit Against Akume

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Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom has made good his threat and dragged the Minister of Special Duties and Inter-Governmental Affairs, Senator George Akume to court.

The suit filed at the Makurdi High Court on Friday, 3rd September is marked MHC/268/2021 and Ortom is accusing Akume of libel and defamation.

Naija News understands the suit was filed on the Governor’s behalf by Okon N. Efut, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), and four other lawyers.

The 17-paragraph statement of claim lodged by the lawyers is based on a press conference convened by Senator Akume in Abuja on 30th August in which he called on the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) to investigate the financial dealings of Benue State under Samuel Ortom.

But Ortom had in response, accused Akume of releasing the statement to organize a ‘smear campaign’ against him. He further accused the Minister of abandoning the people of his constituency who are the ones most affected by the frequent Fulani herdsmen attacks in Benue State, vowing to drag him to court for his utterances during the press conference.

The Governor made good his threat on Friday, when he filed a ₦60bn suit in which he is seeking ₦50 billion as general damages for libel and ₦10 billion as exemplary and aggravated damages.

In the suit filed, Ortom is seeking a perpetual injunction restraining the defendant by himself or through any agent, servants, or privies from similar or further publication of any defamatory statement against him.

No date has been fixed yet for hearing to begin on the matter.

Source: Naija News

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