Law News
Defamation: Osinbajo threatens legal action against Fani-Kayode

The vice presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo (SAN), has threatened a legal action against the spokesman for the President Goodluck Jonathan Campaign Organisation, Chief Femi Fani-Kayode, for what he termed defamation of his person.

Fani-Kayode had, in a recent press statement made available to various media houses, alleged that Osinbajo had taken a secret oath with a national leader of the APC, Bola Tinubu, to relinquish power as the vice president to Tinubu after six months in office, in the event that the APC won the presidential election.

Fani-kayode had, in the statement titled, “APC is selling a dummy to the whole world; Tinubu is the real candidate,” reportedly described Osinbajo as a stooge in the hands of Tinubu.

But Osinbajo, in a pre-litigation letter to Fani-Kayode on Tuesday, asked him to, within seven days, retract the said defamatory statement or be prepared for litigation.

In the letter written on his behalf by his lawyer, Femi Falana (SAN), the senior advocate also asked Fani-Kayode to tender a public apology to him which should be aired on four television stations and published in four national dailies in addition to a payment of N2bn for the damages already done against his person.

Falana said Fani-Kayode’s statement was not only false but was specifically targeted at impugning Osinbajo’s character and lower him in the estimation of right thinking members of the public.

He described Fani-Kayode’s statement as vicious, wicked and reckless, adding that the claims were inconsistent with Osinbajo’s faith, role and ethics as a pastor, a professor of Law and a Senior Advocate of Nigeria.

Falana, while saying that Fani-Kayode’s statement suggested that Osinbajo was complicit in a fraud against the Nigerian people, maintained that such statement negated Osinbajo’s “publicly acclaimed and validated record of competence, honesty and integrity.”

He therefore asked Fani-Kayode to retract the statement with a public apology or “we shall proceed with our client’s instruction to seek appropriate legal remedies for your publication and dissemination of defamatory statements.”

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