The New Democrat newspaper has requested the Civil Law Court at the Temple of Justice to dismiss the US$275,000 libel suit filed against it by National Elections Commission Chairman Cllr. Jerome Korkoya.
The paper through its legal representative asked the court to dismiss the entire complaint on grounds that it is “false, misleading and unfounded.”
In a 12-count response to the court, the paper rubbished all counts outlined in the complaint, terming some of the assertions as “over-exaggeration and mere repetition,” while requesting that others be quashed, dismissed and denied.
In a 54-count complaint filed against the paper, Cllr. Korkoya said the Action of Damages for Libel is based on a July 6 publication of an article titled, “Assessing Presidential Candidate Joseph Nyuma Boakai’s Chances in 2017.”
Korkoya said the article contains false and libellous statements, especially when it said, “NEC Chairman Jerome Korkoya is… very corrupt…”
The paper also published that the NEC boss has been spending big with little to show for it, that rather than purchasing vehicles for the use of the Commission, he instead spent over US$1million to rent vehicles.
According to the complaint, the New Democrat newspaper also published that during the last senatorial by-elections Chairman Korkoya fixed the results in several counties, including Bong where it alleged that the NEC boss was seen in Gbarnga with Senator Jewel Taylor on the day of the polls in the 2014 special senatorial election.
Korkoya claimed that the paper did not contact him for clarity or his side of the story before publishing the article.
“The published statement and the context in which they were made would create the misleading and false impression on the mind of a reader that said statements are true, thereby damaging my good name and reputation,” he noted.
According the Writ of Summons issued by the court recently, the paper is expected to appear in court on Monday, September 19.