Nigeria’s Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo has threatened to sue media practitioners and publishers over reports of his alleged ownership of the collapsed 21-storey building in Lagos.
A release signed by the Vice President’s Lawyer, Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa, SAN, made available to Atlantic Reporters warned publishers and practitioners not to allow the publication of further reports he described as libelous against the Vice President.
Below is the full statement:
All Media Houses, Journalists, Online Publishers, Bloggers, WhatsApp and other Social Media Group Leaders, Etc.
LIBELOUS PUBLICATIONS OF AND CONCERNING HIS EXCELLENCY, PROF YEMI OSINBAJO, SAN, GCON,
ON COLLAPSED IKOYI BUILDING
We are solicitors to His Excellency, the Vice-President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, SAN, GCON (‘our Client’), on whose instruction we write, in respect of the above subject matter. We have the mandate of our Client to draw your esteemed attention to certain publications of and concerning him, in respect of the 21-storey building that recently collapsed in Ikoyi, Lagos State.
These publications, believed to have been sponsored by faceless individuals and entities to tarnish the good name and reputation of our Client, claim most spuriously, that our Client is connected with the said building, one way or the other, without any scintilla of proof. For the records, our Client is not involved in, associated or connected with the ownership or development of the collapsed building, in any manner whatsoever.
This notice has thus become necessary, partly to explain the legal consequences of fabricating falsehood and unsubstantiated negative reports, of and concerning our Client. In law, liability for libelous publications is not limited to the original author or publisher thereof, but it also extends to and includes all those who, out of sheer ignorance, mischief or malice, or all, cause any libelous publication to be repeated, reposted or re-published, either personally or through any platform for which they have control.
Accordingly, we have the instructions of our Client to compile and preserve the particulars of anyone found to have published, re-published or endorsed or consented to the publication, distribution or circulation of any libelous material, of and concerning him, for the purpose of commencing civil actions in court, in any jurisdiction where such publication occurs.
We therefore implore you not to yield your noble platforms for the dissemination of any libelous publication of and concerning our Client, henceforth.
EBUN-OLU ADEGBORUWA, SAN