Chief Raymond Dokpesi, Chairman of DAAR Communications has dragged Nigeria’s minister of information, Alhaji Lai Mohammed to court over the inclusion of his name in the Looters’ list recently released by the Federal government.
Dokpesi through his legal counsel, Chief Mike Ozekhome warned Mohammed to immediately publish a retraction in four newspapers and pay a sum of N500million as failure to do that will lead to the institution of legal action, including a demand for damages in the sum of N5 billion.
Below is a transcript of the letter to Mohammed dated April 4th;
“Contrary to your derogatory, disparaging, mendacious and unrestrained defamatory statements, as published in various print, electronic and online media platforms, of and concerning our client, our client has never been associated with the looting of the public treasury,” the letter read.
Before the court where he is currently standing trial on trumped up charges brought against him by your same Federal Government, he has categorically and unambiguously denied the said charges. At the ongoing trial which has been stalled serially by the Federal Government with series of requests for adjournment, our client has neither been found guilty nor convicted by the trial court or by any other court in Nigeria.
The brazen defamatory statements/ publications of alleged looting of the public treasury mentioned by you against our client are most damaging and clearly rubbish the hard-earned reputation of our client. Our client has since received several and unending phone calls, mails and visits from relatives, friends, associates, as well as other well meaning Nigerians, who have ceaselessly called to express their shock over the vile allegations in the said publications.
Our client has suffered severe public odium, approbrium, ridicule, psychological trauma, untold embarrassment and countless business losses consequent upon your reckless publication which has put him in bad light before reasonable members of the society.
Unless you carry out the above minimal demands immediately, to redress the incalculable damage done to our client’s [image], we shall, without any further communication from us, commence legal action against you to redress your unrestrained and unwarranted assault against our client’s hard earned image and reputation.
We shall, in such circumstances, be demanding for damages in the sum of N5 billion.”