Eruaga may sue Speaker Victor Edoro for defamation
By Itohan Imade
The PDP member representing Etsako west II Mr Sylvanus Eruaga in Edo assembly may sue the speaker Victor Edoror over ‘wanton defamation; of his character, for N500million.
Eruaga speaking through his counsel Barr Dele Igbinedion In Benin City said that the allegation by speaker Edoror at a press conference that he forged his certificate of Return has exposed him to public odium and ridicule, scandal and injured his integrity.
Speaker Edoror had at a press conference on February 8 2015 declared that he was unable to swear in Mr Eruaga who presented the certificate of Return issued him by INEC following a court of Appeal verdict in his favour, because he was in possession of a petition alleging that the said certificate was forged.
Eruaga said the speaker’s allegations are damaging and the premeditated objective of speaker Edoror is “severely damage, denigrate and demean him”, with a view to portraying him as a criminal who is unworthy of public trust or office since he condescended to forging an INEC Certificate of Return”.
Eruaga has also asked the Speaker within the next 48hours to retract the defamatory statements, cause the retraction to be in the media outfits which carried his earlier press conference, write him a letter apologising and in addition pay him the sum of N500m as compensation for wantom defamation.
Eruaga, who was on December 19 2016 declared winner of the Etsako West II State Constituency, by the Court of Appeal sitting in Benin City had accused the state governor, Adams Oshiomhole, of preventing the speaker of the state House of Assembly, from swearing him as a member of the assembly.
Speaking at a media briefing, Eruaga said he has fulfilled all the necessary conditions needed to be sworn-in as a lawmaker and has presented himself to the assembly speaker several times, but the man declined to swear him in.
Mr Eruaga who displayed the original copy of the Certificate of Return issued to him by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), the Enrollment of Order of the Court and clearance papers from the Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB) said he has fulfilled the conditions stipulated by the Electoral law to be sworn-in.
“The speaker keep saying they will get back to me. Court officials served the House through the clerk a Certified True Copy of the Enrollment of Order. They said they wanted a Certificate of Return, I brought it. The speaker told me that my matter was not in his hand. He said he has minuted on it and sent to the governor,” Eruaga said.