Atiku’s N2.5billion libel suit: President Buhari’s aide, Lauretta Onochie, might have bitten more than she can chew

Former Vice President Atiku Abubakar on Tuesday alongside his lawyer, Mike Ozekhome (SAN), appeared at the registry of the Federal High Court in Maitama, Abuja, to sign and file his deposition in support of his N2.5billion libel suit he instituted against Lauretta Onochie, a social media aide to President Muhammadu Buhari.

Naija Buzz News had few months ago reported that Atiku sued Ms Onochie following her tweet stating that Atiku was in the United Arab Emirate to shop for terrorists, adding that the former VP was on the UAE security watch lists.

Atiku who returned from Dubai few days ago was physically at the registry to sign his witness deposition before the Commissioner of Oaths.

“The Waziri is claiming amongst others, the sum of N2.5 bn only, from the Presidential Assistant on Social Media, as general, aggravated, punitive and exemplary damages against her.

“Atiku is claiming this sum from her for her defamatory story published on her twitter handle and Facebook page, in which she stated that Atiku was on the UAE watch list, as a wanted man, asking, ‘shopping for terrorists?’”

The former VP noted that Onochie’s tweet was politically orchestrated deliberately to cause maximum damage to his high reputation while he was challenging the election of President Muhammadu Buhari at the Tribunal.

Atiku had before approaching the court asked Ms. Onochie to retract the post, apologize, and pay the sum of N500million to him as compensation. He threatened to sue her if she refuses to comply with his demand within 48hours.

Lauretta Onochie, President Muhammadu Buhari social media aide
Lauretta Onochie, President Muhammadu Buhari social media aide

However, Onochie ignored the demand and refused to apologize for her obviously misleading post. Consequently, Atiku in his attempt to justify his suit noted that rather than Ms. Onochie to show remorse by retracting her statement, she went further on May 20 to make another derogatory publication against his person.

Atiku asked the court to order Onochie to pay him N2.5billion as “general, aggravated, punitive and exemplary damages over the untold embarrassment, derision, public ridicule, odium, obloquy, marital disharmony, mental agony and psychological trauma which the defendant’s publications have caused the claimant.”

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