[By VICTOR NZE]
Following a publication by Daily Trust newspapers, which referred to him as ‘a drug addict, who had sought rehabilitation in Ghana, but…till today has not been cured of the habit,’ former Minister of Aviation, Chief Femi Fani-Kayode has now threatened legal action against the media company.
This is also as the politician sought a fee of N6 billion from Daily Trust for defamation of character, ‘immeasurable loss of goodwill,’ as well as an apology from the newspaper, which, he demanded, must be published in other national dailies.
According to Fani-Kayode, in a letter signed by the former minister’s lawyer, Adeola Adesipe and addressed to the Managing Director of Daily Trust, and dated August 31, 2020 under the title; ‘Defamation of the character of Chief Femi Fani-Kayode by Iliyasu Gadu,’ the said article by the newspaper was published with the headline; ‘FFK, the Drug Addled Thug in Designer Wears’ on August 30, this year.
Describing the article as having caused him ‘irreparable loss,’ Fani-Kayode requested the newspaper to enter into negotiations with him for possible settlement to the tune of N6 billion within 14 days of receiving the notice or face legal action.
Fani-Kayode has been embroiled in controversy following a bust up with a reported from the daily Trust newspaper when the latter famously asked him who was ‘bankrolling’ his project tours across the country, in the course of media briefing in Calabar, the Cross River State capital, last week.
Since then, chapter members of the umbrella body of journalists, the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) have taken turns to boycott media briefings called on behalf of the politician by his hosts in Oyo and Akwa Ibom states.
Fani-Kayode who has since issued a public apology to the journalist in question, his employers, the daily Trust newspapers, and to members of the media, continued to receive backlash from some segments of the society over his outburst at the press briefing.
“Be aware that our client has not only suffered immeasurable loss of goodwill, he is currently confronted with unbearable opprobrium by his fans, followers and colleagues across the globe.
“Our client is alive to his rights both in law and equity but is disposed to an opportunity to undo the evil you have done by retracting the said insalubrious remarks on the same platform it was published and apologising to him in two other national dailies.
“You are also advised to enter into negotiations with us for the sum of N6bn being a token amount for penitence as opposed to the magnitude of infraction caused to our client’s nobility.”