Atiku Abubakar, former Vice President and presidential candidate the Peoples Democratic Party(PDP) in the 2019 general election, has threatened to file a N2billion lawsuit against Lauretta Onochie, the Special Assistant on social media to President Muhammadu Buhari, for maligning him through the spread of malicious "lies".
In the alternative, Atiku, through his lawyer, asked Onochie to, among others, pay the sum of N500m and tender a written apology and a retraction of the malicious statement.
In Atiku’s letter which was addressed to Onochie and signed by his lawyer, Mike Ozekhome (SAN), the former Vice-President expressed disgust with Onochie’s post on Twitter in which she claimed that that is Atiku on United Arab Emirates’s watchlist.
Onochie posted the tweet on May 7.
Atiku on UAE watchlist- Security sources— Lauretta Onochie (@Laurestar) May 7, 2019
Security operatives in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) are keeping a close tab on a former Nigerian Vice Pres Atiku Abubakar who has been in the Middle East nation for several weeks now
What is he doing there?
Me: Shopping for Terrorists? pic.twitter.com/4EBccZadfi
However, the former Vice President denied having been on any watchlist, he challenged Onochie to substantiate her claim.
The presidential candidate asked Onochie to publish a retraction in six national newspapers and one international daily as well as on social media and also pay N500m into the bargain.
Ozekhome’s letter reads in part: “We have our client’s instructions to demand and we hereby demand from you the following: That you publish and tender a written retraction and apology for the said libellous publication in six national dailies circulating in Nigeria and one international daily as well as on all social media platforms wherein the said publication was made.
“That you pay to our client through the firm, the sum of N500,000,000 only, representing minimal damages to assuage his already battered image wholly caused by your said defamatory publication.
“Take notice that if you fail or refuse to accede to our modest demands within the next 48 hours from the date of this letter, we shall be compelled to activate the full weight of the legal machinery against you without any further recourse to you.
“We shall be, in such a suit, claiming against you the sum of N2bn, representing exemplary aggravated and punitive damages.”