Paul Obiajunwo, Port Harcourt
Justice Adama Iyayi – Lamikanra of Rivers State High Court 1 yesterday adjourned the hearing in the suit filed by the former governor of Rivers State, Dr. Peter Odili against the governorship candidate of All Progressive Congress (APC) in 2015, Dakuku Peterside to October 27, 2016.
In a suit No. PHC/801/2016 which is before Justice Lamikanra who is also the Chief Judge of Rivers State, the former governor Dr. Odili is seeking for N6 billion damages against Dakuku for defamation which resulted from a statement allegedly made by the defendant during the press conference in the state.
It was alleged that the defendant after Wike’s Supreme Court victory, alleging that Wike, during his victory thanksgiving service stated that Odili helped him to secure the Supreme Court victory.
But Odili said what Dakuku said was false and malicious, as Wike never made such inference but that Dakuku twisted and misrepresented what Wike said.
At the court yesterday, counsel to the complainant include, Joseph Ogwu, Donald Atuegu, Akinola Afolabi and Mr. Kanu Agabi(SAN), who is the lead counsel but the defendant and his counsels were absent at the court.
The court which started its proceedings by 9:07 am yesterday adopted the witness statement of the complaint after his lead counsel examines the document.
The counsel to the complaint Mr. Agabi told the judge that there was proof of service on Dakuku.
In the absent of the defendant, Justice Lamikanra adjourned hearing on the suit to 27th of October 2016.
Speaking to the press after the adjournment, the lead counsel to the complainant, Mr. Agabi said, “We sued for libel. And we called our first witness. And we have adjourned for cross examination to 27 October. We felt defamed by their (defendant) publication and we are here to vindicate ourselves.
“You could see that the defendants were not in court but they have been served, they have been properly served. The court would not have proceedings otherwise. “,