From Chris Gaga, Makurdi
Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom has demanded a public apology from the National Chairman of All Progressives Congress (APC), Adams Oshiomhole within seven days or he would face legal action.
Ortom in a letter written to the APC chairman, dated August 6, 2018 by his counsel, Samuel Irabor (ESQ), claimed that his reputation was injured by an alleged sponsored press conference held in Abuja on Friday, July 27th, 2018 at the instance of Oshiomhole.
The governor’s lawyer in the letter stated that the sponsored press conference which was entirely centred on the person of Governor Ortom, alleged very astonishing, unsubstantiated, wild and wide allegations against his client relating to the issue of allocation and payment of salaries, security votes expenditure and the insecurity in Benue state.
He stressed that the aggregate of the allegations emphasised that his client confessed to sharing Benue state money with party leaders and that despite collection of bail out and Paris Club refund monies, the governor could not pay workers salaries among others.
The letter added that the only inference to draw from the unproven allegations which was informed by a dangerously cultivated, albeit unwarranted malice against the governor was to demand for retraction, apology and a N10 billion payment for aggravated damages against the person of Ortom.
“A letter of retraction/apology addressed to our client in respect of the false, defamatory and libellous statement made against him in the sponsored press conference herein complained of.
“That the said retraction/apology be simultaneously published in the Sunday edition of 10 National Dailies circulating within Benue State as well as a paid advertorial to the same effect on the prime time beats of the Nigerian Television Authority (NTA), Channels Tv, TVC News, African Independent Television (AIT), Independent Television (ITV) Benin, Radio Nigeria, Radio Benue and Harvest FM, Makurdi.
“An undertaking not to indulge in any such false publication against our client in future. Payment of #10,000,000,000.00k (Ten Billion Naira) only to our client as punitive, general, exemplary and aggravated damages,” the letter reads in part.