Posted on: www.dailyguideghana.com
By William Yaw Owusu
Friday, June 27, 2014
New Patriotic Party (NPP) Ashanti Regional Chairman Bernard Antwi Boasiako aka Chairman Wontumi has entered conditional appearance in the case in which Ibrahim Mahama, junior brother of President John Dramani Mahama is suing him for defamation.
Mr. Mahama had to file a substituted service in order to locate Chairman Wontumi because the plaintiff claimed the NPP guru could not be traced.
The ‘Notice of entry of conditional appearance’ was filed yesterday by Chairman Wontumi’s solicitors Faibille & Faibille, Constance Chambers at Asylum Down in Accra.
Mr. Mahama through his solicitors Gaisie Zwennes Hughes & Co wants GH¢2million damages to be awarded against Chairman Wontumi for defamatory statements he allegedly made against the President’s brother.
According to the plaintiff, Chairman Wontumi had allegedly said among other things that “President Mahama and his brother Ibrahim have loaded all the money into their pockets. Each and everyday they increase petrol prices and then you and I, the downtrodden, suffer to pay for the increases – they keep the monies in their pockets, and use it to buy planes – aeroplanes – in which they fly.”
The plaintiff further claimed “Each week, President Mahama and his brother, Ibrahim, travel to South Africa. You, my brother, the monies President Mahama has given to his brother, - have you got any? Does someone pay your children’s school fees?”
As a result, the plaintiff wants further declaration that “the statements made by the defendant complained of are false, malicious and defamatory of the plaintiff.”
He also wants an order directed at Chairman Wontumi to publish a full unqualified apology to him and a retraction of the statements made in all the newspapers and tabloids in which the statements were repeated by their publications.
In his statement of claim, the plaintiff averred that the words spoken of by the defendant are understood to mean that he (Ibrahim) is a thief and a dishonest man with criminal tendencies.
“That the plaintiff has taken into his possession monies not belonging to him has treated same with as his own property for his own personal use.”
“That the plaintiff is somehow engaged in a secretly orchestrated enterprise of stealing those monies which happened to be public funds, having been realized from the citizenry of Ghana by the Head of the government of Ghana under a false pretext.”
The plaintiff further averred that the defamatory statements were made in a manner that was calculated to cause “maximum damage and hurt to the plaintiff’s reputation by causing him to be unanimously held in contempt and disdain throughout the nation.”
“Indeed, the defendant concluded his defamatory statement by letting out a clarion call for a people’s uprising to ‘replicate what happened in Tunisia’.”
He said, “the defamatory statements were made maliciously by the defendant, who made the statements recklessly and/or not caring whether they were true or false; The defamatory statement were made in a manner that damaged the plaintiff’s reputation in the manner of his trade and business as an honest businessman who has achieved success by dint of his own hard work.”
“Despite being given a fair and more than ample opportunity to retract and apologize to the plaintiff for the defamatory statements made, as requested in the plaintiff’s lawyer’s letter dated 11th April 2014, the Defendant refused to so do, and treated the request with contempt.”