Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, has appeared before a Rivers State High Court in Port Harcourt, to testify as a witness in a seven billion naira libel suit against ThisDay Newspaper.
Governor Wike had in August 2020 sued the newspaper for publishing a report captioned “With Wike, Obaseki Meets His PDP’S Waterloo; Almost” on June 23, 2020.
Other defendants in the suit are Leaders and Company Limited’s (ThisDay’s parent company) Davidson Iriekpen, Chuks Okocha and Adibe Emenyonu.
The Governor told the court, which was presided over by Justice Adolphus Enebeli that the publication portrayed him as deceitful and an unreliable person who exerts great influence on judicial matters and over court sittings in Port Harcourt.
In his written statement on oath, Governor Wike stated that the defendants accused him of influencing the decision of the Court sitting in Port Harcourt that granted an injunction restraining Godwin Obaseki from participating in the primaries of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Edo State in 2020 to favour his ally, Omoregie Ogbeide-Ihama, who was the beneficiary of the order.
The court adjourned the matter for further hearing to 12th, 13th and 14th of January 2022.
Speaking to journalists outside the court, one of the lawyers to Governor Wike, Mark Agwu said it is important for Governor Wike to clear his name from the malicious publication.