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Court awards N4m damages to Punch, columnist against Obasanjo

An FCT High Court has imposed the sum of N4 million cost in favour of Punch and its columnist, Sonala Olumhense, against former President Olusegun…

An FCT High Court has imposed the sum of N4 million cost in favour of Punch and its columnist, Sonala Olumhense, against former President Olusegun Obasanjo over a defamation suit.

Justice Modupe Osho-Adebiyi in her ruling held that N2 million to both defendants was the cost of the action.

Obasanjo had filed a defamation suit demanding the sum of N1 billion in damages against the newspaper in 2019 following an article which questioned his account of Nigerian history.

According to the copy of the ruling obtained by Daily Trust Saturday, the award followed the application by Obasanjo’s counsel, Emmanuel Bisong Otinyia Esq for the discontinuance of the matter and for it to be struck out.

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However, following the application for discontinuance, counsel to Punch and Olumhense, R.O. Adakole and Sam Ogala Esq respectively demanded the payment of N3m in costs for the travels and filing of processes and for the matter to be dismissed.

“Having dismissed this suit, it is trite that costs follow events. Case has definitely incurred a lot of costs and counsel at times has had to travel from outside jurisdiction to attend court.

“Both counsel have sought a cost of N3m only each but I hereby award the sum of N2m only each to the 1st and 2nd defendants as cost of this action,” the judge ruled.

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