A Makurdi High Court presided over by Justice Theresa Igoche has granted leave to the Governor of Benue State, Samuel Ortom to serve the National Chairman of the APC, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole and the All Progressives Congress, APC with his writ of summons in Suit No. MHC/280/2018.
Justice Igoche granted the leave on Friday when the suit came up, counsel to Governor Ortom, Mr Samuel Irabor moved an ex-parte application seeking the leave of court to serve the defendants in Abuja outside the Benue State Judicial Division.
The judge found merit in the application and granted leave for the defendants to be served at the APC National Secretariat, Abuja.
Once served with the writ of summons, the defendants have 30 days to enter appearance and file their defence.
Governor Ortom had among other things, averred that the defendants assassinated his character and damaged his reputation when he, Comrade Oshiomhole accused him (Ortom) of having a hand in the death of two Catholic priests and their parishioners at Mbalom community on the ground that one of the priests had preached a ‘very critical sermon’ against Governor Ortom. Ortom therefore prays the Honourable Court for the following reliefs:
Governor Ortom had through his counsel declared that the Defendants’ allegations and publication against him were false, mischievous, unsubstantiated, defamatory and libellous.
He thereby sought an order directing the defendants to publish simultaneous retractions/apologies in respect of the said defamatory and libelous publication against the Plaintiff in the Sunday editions of 10 national dailies circulating within Benue State as well as paid advertorials to the same effect on the prime time beats of some electronic media.
The governor through his counsel demanded the sum of #10,000,000,000.00K (Ten Billion Naira) only as damages in favour of the Plaintiff and against the defendants jointly and severally for the defamation and libel of the Plaintiff’s character and reputation by the Defendants.