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Atiku Signs Witness Statement In N2.5bn Libel Suit Against Buhari’s Aide, Lauretta Onochie

Atiku is demanding N2.5b from Onochie, as general, aggravated, punitive and exemplary damages.

Atiku Signs Witness Statement In N2.5bn Libel Suit Against Buhari's Aide, Lauretta Onochie 1

Former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar has signed his witness deposition (on Oath) before the Commissioner for Oaths, in the case he instituted against President Muhammadu Buhari’s Special Assistant on Social Media, Lauretta Onochie, earlier in June.

KanyiDaily recalls that Atiku, who was candidate of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) in the 2019 presidential election, had had threatened to sue Onochie over an alleged libelous tweet she posted on her Twitter handle on May 7, 2019.

In the tweet, Onochie had suggested that Atiku was on the watch list of security operatives in the United Arab Emirates and had traveled to shop for terrorists in the Middle East.

Atiku demanded an apology, retraction of the statement and payment of N500m compensation from Onochie “to assuage” the damage allegedly caused him by her social media post.

However, rathan than show “remorse by retracting her earlier publication”, Onochie on May 20 further made “another derogatory publication and also published same globally online in the social and other print media” against Atiku.

In July, Atiku finally prayed the court in the suit marked CV/2287/19, to order Onochie to pay him the N2.5bn as “general, aggravated, punitive and exemplary damages over the untold embarrassment, derision, public ridicule, odium, obloquy, marital disharmony, mental agony and psychological trauma which the defendant’s publications have caused the claimant.”

The former president appeared at the registry of the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory in Maitama, Abuja, on Tuesday, December 3, 2019, to sign and file his deposition in support of the N2.5bn libel suit which he instituted against Lauretta Onochie.

This was made known by his lead counsel, Chief Mike Ozekhome (SAN), while addressing journalists on Tuesday.

In one of the pictures, Atiku was seen seated while holding a pen above a white paper with Ozekhome bent over the table beside him.

“Chief Mike Ozekhome, SAN, OFR, today, at the Central Registry of the FCT, High Court, Maitama, Abuja, with his client, His Excellency, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, Waziri Adamawa,”Ozekhome stated.

“The former Vice President was physically at the Registry to sign his witness deposition (on oath) before the Commissioner for Oaths, on the case he instituted against Lauretta Onochie.

“The Waziri is claiming amongst others, the sum of N2.5 bn only, from the Presidential Assistant on Social Media, as general, aggravated, punitive and exemplary damages against her.

“Atiku is claiming this sum from her for her defamatory story published on her twitter handle and Facebook page, in which she stated that Atiku was on the UAE watch list, as a wanted man, asking, ‘shopping for terrorists?”

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