The Comptroller-General of Customs Service, Alhaji Abdullahi Dikko Inde, has slammed damages of one billion naira against the publisher of Shipping World Magazine, Asu Beks for allegedly defaming his character through some unguarded utterances he made on Silverbird Television.
In a letter which was served on Asu Beks through the counsel to Alhaji Abdullahi Dikko Inde, Amobi Nzelu & Co, the Customs chief stated? that on the 22nd day of August, 2012, in an interview with Silver Bird Television aired between 8.30am and 9.00am throughout the federation, the publisher of Shipping World Magazine had alleged that: “Alhaji Dikko Inde is a financier of the dreaded Boko Haram sect and he has been funding Boko Haram insurgency in Nigeria.”
The counsel to Comptroller-General Inde said the words which the accused spoke about his client to hearing of a large percentage of Nigerians were defamatory and highly damaging.?
“Ordinarily, we could have advised our client to ignore your interview and wht you said as one of those rantings of a disgruntled person, but for the security implication and weighty nature of those words contained therein. Furthermore, posterity will adjudge our client guilty if he did not respond to such weighty allegations. It is in this light that we chose to respond to you on his behalf,” the letter read.
The letter alleged that Azu Beks probably embarked on the campaign of calumny against Alhaji Inde because his request for his daughter to be recruited into the Nigeria Customs Service was not granted, saying it was not that the fault of the Comptroller-General that Beks’ daughter could not produce her National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) discharge certificate or exemption certificate which is a condition precedent for employment into public service for graduates.
The parts of the demand of the letter include a rebuttal from Asu Beks of the said allegation in seven national dailies namely; Punch, Sun, ThisDay, Leadership, Daily Trust, Tribune and Guardian;? a letter of apology to our client and copied to seven print media houses Punch, Sun, ThisDay, Leadership, Daily Trust, Tribune and Guardian.