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N20 Billion Slander Suit: Dokpesi Begs Tinubu, Opts for Out of Court Settlement

By Niyi Adeyi

The embattled ownership of the African Independent Television (AIT) and Raypower  has resorted to out of court settlement on the N20 Billion slander charge slammed against it, by the former Lagos State Governor, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, as it has submitted an apology letter to a Lagos High court over a controversial documentary against the plaintiff.

Tinubu sued the management of AIT last year, after making an unsuccessful directive to it to stop further broadcast of a derogatory documentary on him titled: “Unmasking the Real Tinubu: The Lion of Bourdillon” , which alleged the ruling APC National Leader illegally amassed wealth of the State to himself.

In adopting the terms of settlement in the letter dated January 29, 2016, Justice Iyabo Akinkugbe ordered Daar Communications Plc to publicly and unequivocally withdraw the documentary. She held that the station should write an unreserved apology letter to the former Governor, thrice and once daily.

The defendants’ letter which was filed by their Counsel, Mr. Mike Ozekhome, indicate:  “Daar Communications Plc acknowledges that Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu is an outstanding political leader of unblemished character and integrity, as well as a leading public figure and opinion-moulder, who has made and continues to make immense contributions to the progress and development of the nation in general and Lagos State in particular”.

“Daar Communications Plc admits that in airing the said documentary, it had no intention, whatsoever, to embarrass or diminish the high reputation of Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu which it respects and attests to.

“We have come here today that every war that is fought is finally resolved at the round table,” said Mr. Ozekhome, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria.

“Parties have decided to settle amicably to enable both parties to continue with the good relationship that they have always had before the devil struck”, stated the letter.

Following the development, Asiwaju Tinubu’s Counsel, Chief Wole Olanipekun (SAN) responded that the plaintiff consented to the out of court settlement arrangement.

It would be recalled the AIT and Raypower owner, Chief Raymond Dokpesi was arrested investigated and prosecuted last year, over collection of N2.1 Billion out of the $2.1 Billion arms procurement money from former National Security Adviser (NSA), Col Sambo Dasuki (rtd).

The charge was preferred against him by the EFCC and hearing proper is to resume this month. Dokpesi was released after being granted bail few days to Christmas last year.


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