By Chinenye Festus:
The Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami (SAN), has threatened to sue SaharaReporters within seven days if the online news publication failed to retract stories published on him on July 10, 11 and 12, 2020.
In a statement by his spokesperson, Umar Gwandu, on Monday, Malami said that publications by SaharaReporters on each of the dates mentioned had caused him trauma and damaged his reputation before right-thinking persons across the world.
According to the statement which reads partly, “Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, vowed to take legal action against Sahara Reporters on account of defamatory publications made against him.
“Malami said, the consequence of the criminal defamation published by Sahara Reporters, has subjected him to considerable distress, psychological trauma, anxiety and greatly injured his character and reputation, which is capable of lowering his estimation in the eyes of right-thinking persons in the society.
“A senior lawyer has already been briefed to deal with the matter as may be appropriate, in the event of failure to retract the publication in question and offer the requested apology within the stipulated time.”.
“Malami gave the medium a seven-day ultimatum to retract all the libelous and criminally defamatory publications against him and issue a public apology to be published on the platform and on the front pages of three national newspapers for three consecutive days.
“He said since the 10th of July 2020 when the defamatory articles were first published, he has been receiving several telephone calls and visits from well-meaning Nigerians, his friends, well-wishers and associates from all over the world including those he has dealt with/still dealing with in his official capacity as Nigeria’s chief law officer, many of whom have expressed serious concerns over the publication.”
Recall that, In a series of text and photo stories in recent days, which later went viral on different blogs on social media, SaharaReporters had exposed how Malami, who was a little known lawyer before being appointed into the government of President Muhammadu Buhari in 2015, had maintained an opulent lifestyle fuelled by public funds despite displaying a saintly posture before the public.
Apart from purchasing an N300m mansion in Abuja and erecting another N100m property in Kebbi State for his newly married son, Abdulaziz, Malami broke the bank to hire several private jets to fly in family members and important guests to the lavish ceremony, which took place inside the Kano State Government House on Saturday.
But despite the threat to sue SaharaReporters for the said publications, Malami failed to disclose the particular stories he was referring to and or address critical issues raised in each one.
By Chinenye Festus: