Bode George Loses Libel Case Against TheNEWS

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Convicted PDP chieftain and former Board Chairman of Nigeria Ports Authority, NPA, Chief Bode George, today lost the libel case he instituted against TheNEWSmagazine, P.M.NEWS and the Daily Independent newspaper.
The matter came up today at the Badagry High Court, Lagos.
Delivering judgement in the case, the presiding judge, Justice Akeem Oshodi, held that a man cannot claim damages for a reputation that he does not possess.
Going through the facts of the matter, the judge noted that all the witnesses called by Bode George did not prove sufficiently to the court that he was libelled by the media reports which were tendered in court.
Chief Bode George
Justice Oshodi noted that since Bode George had earlier been convicted by a Lagos High Court judge on same facts which he claimed he had been libelled with, it would be inappropriate to grant him damages on those facts.
According to the judge, “the court notes through the submission of the defendant that claimant had been convicted to two years without an option of fine on the same facts which he alleged libel. A man cannot lay claim to a reputation that he never had. And as such this case fails in its entirety.”
Consequently, the judge struck out the case.
Although counsel to Bode George, Bambo Adesanya, SAN, had argued in his final submission that the judgement in question convicting his client was of no relevance to the libel but, since it was not in existence as at the time the case was instituted, Justice Oshodi disregarded his argument.
He stated that Bode George was only trying to deceive the court by claiming that he was not under any probe by the EFCC or any panel of inquiry.
Bode George had claimed an aggregate sum of N2 billion in the libel suit he instituted against TheNEWS magazine, P.M.NEWS and Daily Independent newspaper.


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