Tinubu withdraws suit against AIT after apology for “embarrassing” documentary

FILE PHOTO: Bola Tinubu
FILE PHOTO: Bola Tinubu

The African Independent Television has apologized to Bola Tinubu, a national leader of the ruling All Progressives Congress, for a documentary it aired before last year’s general election.

In a letter of apology tendered before a Lagos High Court on Friday, Daar Communications, the owners of the TV station, said they hold Mr. Tinubu in high esteem.

“Daar Communications Plc acknowledges that Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu is an outstanding political leader of unblemished character and integrity, as well as a leading public figure and opinion-moulder, who has made and continues to make immense contributions to the progress and development of the nation in general and Lagos State in particular,” read the letter.

“Daar Communications Plc admits that in airing the said documentary, it had no intention, whatsoever, to embarrass or diminish the high reputation of Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu which it respects and attests to.”

The apology came amid an ongoing Economic and Financial Crimes Commission investigation of alleged illegal receipt of N2.1 billion by Raymond Dokpesi, the owner of AIT.

The TV station had begun airing a documentary on March 1st last year titled, “Unmasking the Real Tinubu: The Lion of Bourdillon, showcasing various properties and companies across Lagos purportedly owned by Mr. Tinubu, described as “Nigeria’s biggest landlord”.

The documentary also claimed that Mr. Tinubu was “charged with narcotics” in 1993 in the United States.

Hours after it debuted on AIT, Mr. Tinubu wrote to Daar Communications, the owners of the TV station, threatening to sue if they did not stop the documentary which he deemed defamatory “in all respects.”

Mr. Tinubu also gave the company’s management 24 hours to apologize and retract the publication and demanded N20 billion as damages.

AIT ignored the former governor and continued to broadcast the documentary, and issued a statement describing his threats as “laughable.”

On March 5, Mr. Tinubu, through his lawyers, Wole Olanipekun and Tunji Abayomi, instituted a N150 billion suit against the station alleging that the documentary was libellous and aimed at tarnishing his image.

Eleven days later, Justice Iyabo Akinkugbe issued a restraining order barring AIT from further airing the documentary.

But on Friday, Mike Ozekhome, the TV station’s lawyer, and Wole Olanipekun, Mr. Tinubu’s lawyer, told the judge they had reached an out-of-court settlement.

“We have come here today that every war that is fought is finally resolved at the round table,” said Mr. Ozekhome, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria.

“Parties have decided to settle amicably to enable both parties to continue with the good relationship that they have always had before the devil struck.”

Mr. Olanipekun supported Mr. Ozekhome’s position, noting that it was time to sheathe their swords.

While adopting the terms of the settlement, dated January 29th, 2016, the judge ordered Daar Communications Plc to publicly and unequivocally retract the documentary thrice daily.

She also ordered the TV station to apologize to Mr. Tinubu.

She asked the defendant to tender an unreserved apology to Tinubu, “three times, once daily.”

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  • Peter_Edo

    so na so AIT come reach?

    • Arkhuma

      You still dey watch am?

    • AIT

      a disgrace——-to Journalism

  • Richard

    Where are the members of Party of Demonic People ( PDP) to comment on this.

  • Curious K

    Vengeance has no foresight, Good one Tinubu.

    • saraki

      But it has on Saraki abi

      • tundemash

        Why is Saraki running from his court case ?

  • ed

    Recounting the original broadcast as an untrue story would’ve been more appropriate. Or running a full page retraction.

  • EMMANUEL

    I use ds story as point of refence: May evryone who hs gone around spreading falsehood about u com back whn d glory of your life shall appear 2 prostrate on d ground, retract & eat evey bit of their malicious vomit they hv made against u, jst as AIT & its management did for Tinubu….let smbdy shout a big Amen….lolzzz

    • Bayo

      Amen.

    • tundemash

      Amen ! I claim it in Jesus’s name !

    • Julius

      Amen !!

  • Burning Spear

    Was the story AIT told Nigerians about the stealing habits of Tinubu not true? Nigerian newspaper houses are like that-(Money na hand back na ground)-U harass them a little with the Buhari Gestapo–Ya see them quickly forget the axiom that the (pen is mightier than the sword) It was under Jonathan sha—because of his Ijaw tribal marks—-The media was almost forced to kneel down and beg Obj-via Orji Kalu–But he did not—Now the shock in most of these activities–is that the very media that had it good under Jonathan, are the ones who are queuing up behind the evil acts of Buhari again—The likes of Comfort Obi of the Sources, This Day—-ati the Sun———–the senior House Boy of the press to Buhari—trying-to (yes sir) their way through the hearts and minds of the 39b Liar Mohamed—allocated to himself—in the Buhari budget of madness——–what a shame-what a country–what a media house?—animals

    • Buhari4Ever

      Schizophrenic Deri Orbuka, no help for you yet?

    • Julius

      @Otile, remember the name I gave you ?. Loser !. You living up to it daily. lolz

  • IZON Redeemer

    WHY PRESIDENT BUHARI’S GOVT FAILED TO DELIVER.

    1] The Nigerian Constitution will hinder me administration.

    2] My current Age will limit my performance in government.

    3] NASS Leadership is detrimental to our govt and the Budget that Obama himself helped us prepare before the 2015 elections.

    4] However the Judiciary is my main headache. I intend to sack all the judges when I came back from my vacation.

    5] Igbo people are out to frustrate me, with Biafra agitation.

    6] Ijaw Ex-militant leader, Tompolo’s supporters are affecting crude oil production WHICH we the Fulanis know does not belong to Niger deltan Ijaws and others in the South south.

    7] Yoruba people are traitors and not sincere….

    8] Indicted people are not returning their loots to me because it is the money from my government that we are using to cover up for them again.

    IT IS ONE EXCUSE AFTER ANOTHER. ALMOST A YEAR GONE. BUHARI HAVE ONLY 2 YEARS REMAINING TO DO HIS WORK, AS 7 MONTHS IN 2018 AND 5 MONTHS IN 2018 ARE FOR ELECTION CAMPAIGN AND HANDOVER

    Like · Reply · 1 min

    • Buhari4Ever

      Delusional Deri Orbuka, still campaigning for GEJ or another Ijaw deadbeat? Good luck!!

  • MC

    “Daar Communications Plc acknowledges that Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu is an outstanding political leader of unblemished character and integrity, as well as a leading public figure and opinion-moulder, who has made and continues to make immense contributions to the progress and development of the nation in general and Lagos State in particular,” read the letter.

    Hahahahahahaahahahahaahahahahahaah!!!!! Dopkesi is the biggest coward in history of man. Kai!

  • Burning Spear

    A disgrace to all that the ethics that Journalism stands for in the world—-Media Houses only Apologise when the publication is wrong——————if they lied–But in this case we all know they told us nothing but the truth–yet they begged–what a shame for the people of Edo state-Na so una be

    • Buhari4Ever

      Deri Orbuka, an average man from Edo State is more intelligent than any Ijaw man.That was how the trio of Anenih, Oghiadomhe and Dokpesi deceived GEJ out of Aso Rock.

      • isaaac omafuaire

        You forget to add thief, sorry, chief Ikimi.

        • Victor Aikhionbare

          Lol

      • Julius

        And getting ready for jail

    • Julius

      You are a moron that never care of facts. You are a joke !

    • Victor Aikhionbare

      No. We are not idiots like some who blow up pipelines and decimate our own environment in the name of depriving Govt of a few dollars. Comprende?

  • Burning Spear

    A disgrace to all that the ethics of Journalism stands for in the world—-Media Houses only Apologise when what they published is wrong——————if they lied–But in this case we all know they told us nothing but the truth–yet they begged–what a shame for the people of Edo state-Na so una be for night?

    • hinXZG

      And they can’t even defend what they published, thinking they are professionals in Journalism. Fools!!

    • tundemash

      Mor0n learn from Dokpesi’s experience, your falsehood will not last forever!

      • Julius

        hahahahahaha, see bro I told you. EXCUSES !!

      • kevenreal

        Ofemanu Tundemash. How is the psychosis ravaging your family going? Your chicken brain have not allowed to understand that settling out of court is an indictment of Thiefnubu. He went to court to clear his name right? Has the court now cleared his name?

        • tundemash

          Mor0n, when u are a bit sober from the effects of the cheap drugs yu take, read this news again especially the paragraph:

          In a letter of apology tendered before a Lagos High Court on Friday, Daar Communications, the owners of the TV station, said they hold Mr. Tinubu in high esteem.

          “Daar Communications Plc acknowledges that Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu is an outstanding political leader of unblemished character and integrity, as well as a leading public figure and opinion-moulder, who has made and continues to make immense contributions to the progress and development of the nation in general and Lagos State in particular,” read the letter.

          “Daar Communications Plc admits that in airing the said documentary, it had no intention, whatsoever, to embarrass or diminish the high reputation of Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu which it respects and attests to.”

          • kevenreal

            “Daar Communications Plc admits that in airing the said documentary, it had no intention, whatsoever, to embarrass or diminish the high reputation of Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu which it respects and attests to.”

            What was the aim of the documentary then? Well, it is to tell the truth, and AIT have not come back to say it was a lie. So, Thiefnubu has not cleared his name. Everything AIT said was in the public knowledge, so Tinubu needs a court judgement to clear his name. In fact, for the fact that he withdrew his own suit against AIT is admittance of guilt.

          • tundemash

            “Daar Communications Plc acknowledges that Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu is an outstanding political leader of unblemished character and integrity, as well as a leading public figure and opinion-moulder, who has made and continues to make immense contributions to the progress and development of the nation in general and Lagos State in particular,”

            Creek rat, check out the meaning of unblemished character and integrity and you still claim AiT have not recanted ? AiT tendered an unreserved apology and u are still here ranting the script you were handed pre-election! Self-deluded cl0wn.

          • kevenreal

            Ofe manu Tunde-amala. How will the excess palm oil you eat with amala every day allow you reason well. “Unblemished character” is a personal opinion. What is not a personal opinion is that Alpha Beta took 10% of Lagos state money for over 10yrs. That he cornered government properties. That he was charged for drug running and forfeited close to half a million Dollars for that. These things are in the public domain both in Nigeria and abroad. To clear his name is something more than settling out of court. He needs a judgement from a court to clear his name. Again, AIT have not said what they showed in the documentary was false.

            So, continue to jubilet in your propaganda auto mode as usual. But I assure you I will debunk each of your bigotry with facts and better reasoning.

            As for your family crises, I have thorazine for you and your family psychosis. If you put pride aside, I will send you some. It is a one killer punch for your malaise.

          • tundemash

            Dunce, you can wallow in your stup1dity for a long as you want. Tinubu was charged for drug running and forfeited money and yet was invited and attended the Democratic party convention ? U can cry for as long as you want, it changes nothing ! may yur sorrow and wailing last your generations unborn !

    • Ade Omowest

      “Rotten Spear” ‘Abi wetin u dey call yourself’. If you know that all what AIT broadcasted were true, take an advertisement in a newspaper tomorrow with your real name and address to publish the ‘so called truth’ and let see whether you will not go to prison for libelous publication.

  • hinXZG

    These guys are clowns! Bunch of fools!!
    Why won’t they apologize?! When they did what they did because of money!! A disgrace to all that the ethics of Journalism stands for in the world, according to @BurningSpear.

  • Omole

    God All-Mighty has a way of redeeming the image of His slave! when someone is rubbishing ur image, pls turn to God. Congrats to – ‘the JAGABAN WORLDWIDE….

    • ugoman

      Never you bring God into Tinubu matter else you will be judged alongside with him.The case here is not that of a devil and a saint or a holy Dokpesi and a Tinubu the sinner,both are agents of the devil. What has changed is only the circumstances. One devil’s agent merely has an upper hand now and that doesn’t change him from what he is. I am really sorry for we the ordinary Nigerians.

  • I Hate Sycophant Truly

    You see what PDP has turned this man to. Making him look like rat and diminish his rank in journalism. His over forty years of active journalism has been thrown to the mud because of money and relevance. There’s no way truth will not overtake falsehood, no matter how it flies.
    Orile, Burning Spear, IZON Redeemer and their like, this is a big lesson for you to learn from but if you think like that proverbial fly that lead corpse to the grave, that would be your greatest undoing and it would remain you and your God when recanting your deed with him. Throwing lies and propaganda on the premise of supporting political party has a grave consequence. I think, there should be decorum and things done within the ambit of truth and righteous standing. A word is enough for the wise Orile, Burning Spear, IZON Redeemer.

    • Comfortkay

      I hope those guys you mention Sir will listen.

      • I Hate Sycophant Truly

        I hope so if the spirit in them can accommodate it because it seems they’ve sold their conscience to politics, tribalism, ethnicity, religiosity and sectionalism. May God give them the heart and remove the stony heart in them (Orile, Burning Spear, IZON Redeemer)

      • Julius

        No they wont. They will come up with some excuses, its what they do best. Reality is never one of their character. They may even call for separation again because Tinubu won in this case !.lolz

  • famaks

    It is of no use. those who vilify some one like me for staking out that what AIT was doing before election was PAID JOB, deserve apologies from PDPGEJ appologists . the moment the source of the slush money was revealed I knew AIT will eat humble pie.

    they had gone to court to ask for 200 Billion as against TINUBU ‘ S 150B suit.

    what a Shame on currupt people fighting against change. AIT must refund 2.1b to EFCC.

    QED

    • Truthometer

      Talk about dog going back to eat its vomits. I remember my grandfather’s talking drummer in those days. His drum used
      to say: “Baba ni baba nje, baba ni baba nje, e ba takiti, ki e fori
      sogi, baba ni baba n je”. Tinubu defeated a well dollar-oiled
      unorganized campaign of clueless incumbent, that turned the central bank
      into his personal ATM. AIT is as useless as its owner and paymaster.
      Tinubu is politically superior to all of them. They all know that by
      now.

  • Comfortkay

    It would have been suicide for AIT if they have not apologized to Asiwaju Tinubu because AIT and Daar Communication is a complete broken company.
    Many of their staff has not been paid for months and if they lost the court case and they have to pay for damages it would have been the end of AIT.

    • ugoman

      The end is not far at all.They had gone into coma before and after all regained life, that was their first death .They came alive after a prolonged funds appeal. This time they will die a second death and that will be final.They can go ahead to retract the documentary, even as at the time of airing it,they merely brought to the open what any average lagosian knew already.let them say Tinubu is a saint, it’s immaterial.

  • Rufus

    Dokpesi don kpeme……

  • tundemash

    “Parties have decided to settle amicably to enable both parties to continue with the good relationship that they have always had before the devil struck.

    Any guess who that devil is ? Other nicknames for him are Don Fortunato, Ineffective Buffon, Dumbo Jo.

    Can Ole Dokpesi do us a favour please and recall the army of jobless people like TJohnson, TAWANDA, Otile, Oleku, Shae Idea, Deri, eclub, Damilola back to the amnesty camp and let them know the lies they were told has run its full course please?

    • Julius

      lolz. Talk about cowards . You see what they know how to do best, BEGGING !!. They make noise and beg later. Some will come on here and make excuses as to why AIT backed down. They will tell you that everything AIT said is true but, for some reasons they recant and settled. You have to laugh at these people bro. I bet they coughed up some money too, paying Tinubu’s lawyers. Big time. lolz

  • Netanyahu

    AIT should have aired the documentary one more time before apologising. Cowards. From grapevine, this was the understanding reached for Tinubu to intervene to save Thief Dokpesi from going to prison because he would have no money to refund the N2.1 billion he collected from Daduki. Mind you he still has an axe to grind with the boss, Buhari and you know Buhari does not forgive easily. Dokpesi is finished. I am sure each day he ses Buhari’s mean face on TV, something tells him the hangman was still preparing a noose for him. AIT really threw decency to the dogs during the campaigns. This is payback time. How they never thought of the possibility of Jonathan losing that election is idiotic. The lust for money is the devil proper.

  • Julius

    This would not have happened if Jonathan had won re-election ! lolz. We all knew it was a hit job on Tinubu/ APC and many of us said it at the time. It was fully paid for by the PDP. Now we know where the money came from. This old shameless man must be made to refund the money and spend time in jail.

  • favourtalk

    That is the jagaban of all Africa. He has won all around the world, Nigeria can now see that it was truly a propaganda against the integrity of the true leader in Nigeria.

  • Angry Niaja

    I hope this is not some form of abracadabra that is going on. Dokpesi should still be tried for the money he collected for his campaign of calumny. That money was the arms purchase, so he has blood on his hands.

  • Angry Niaja

    Has anyone noticed that the PDPig erats are gradually fading away now that the funds has dried up. lol

    • kevenreal

      That Alpha Beta took 10% of Lagos state IGR for 10 years is in the official documents of Lagos, not made up by anybody or AIT. Everything AIT showed was already in the public domain, many people already know.

      Tinubu has not cleared his name by any means. Settling out of court is actually admittance of his guilt. He was the one that went to court and the one that withdrew his case.