Maureen Badejo, a U.K.-based Nigerian blogger, has found herself in serious trouble.
This comes after Justice Abiodun Akinyemi of Abeokuta’s Ogun State High Court slammed N500 million damages against her for publishing libellous publications against Dr Daniel Olukoya, and the church, the General Overseer of Mountain of Fire and Miracles Ministries (Worldwide).
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The Court also granted “a perpetual injunction restricting the defendant from further making, publishing and/or disseminating defamatory stories and statements about the claimants or any of them by herself, her agents, servants, privies or other persons as called or described.”
The Judge described the report as the worst case of the internet and social media’s reckless defamation and evil use.
What the Incorporated Trustees of MFM and Olukoya described as 52 lies had been published by Badejo, the anchorperson on Facebook-GIO TV.
She was said to have reported that, by selling his books in America without paying the due tax on the books, Olukoya defrauded the United States government.
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Among others, GIO TV reported that a specific MFM pastor in the United Kingdom paid the sum of £ 150,000 into Olukoya’s personal account and then went to Nigeria to meet the cleric so that he could help him cover up his fraud.
But Justice Akinyemi awarded N250 million to each of the claimants in delivering his ruling in a N10 billion libel suit filed by Ime Nya Asanga (lawyer to the complainants), making a total of N500 million as aggravated and exemplary damages for libel.
“The Judge also ordered Badejo to “pull down each of the offending online publications/posts concerning the internet claimants immediately and delete them.
She was also ordered to “tender a written apology and withdrawal of the offending publications and posts in a form and content acceptable to the claimants and prominently published in her Facebook, YouTube and Instagram accounts and immediately in at least three nationally circulating Nigerian newspapers and two international magazines, including TIME International.”
On Saturday, the Olukoya spokesperson, Collins Edomaruse, quoted Asanga as saying that a certified true copy of the judgement and its Form 35 certificate endorsed thereon had been served with proof of service via DHL courier indicating that the court ruling had been received by Badejo.
He clarified that Form 35 of the Ogun State High Court entitled ‘Notice Of Consequence Of Disobedience To Order Of Court’ was an endorsement of the Certificate of Judgment by the Registrar.
According to him, he/she would be guilty of contempt of court and would be liable to be committed to prison unless the judgement debtor obeys the instructions contained therein.
“If the defendant should make any other defamatory broadcast of the claimants or any of them after February 18, 2021, contempt proceedings, which are criminal in nature, will be immediately brought against her,” the lawyer clarified.
From Ejes Gist Nigeria
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