Tongraan wins defamation case against Concerned Citizens of Talensi

Tongraan Kugbilsong Nalebgetang is the former MP for Talensi
The Paramount Chief of the Talensi Traditional Area, Tongraan Kugbilsong Nalebgetang, has won a defamation lawsuit against the Concerned Citizens of Talensi over a series of traditional media publications on his personality and image.

On different occasions, a press release by the Concerned Citizens of Talensi made rounds and deemed to be targeting the personality of the Tongraan.

The first publication was on May 20, 2019 with the headline ‘The Tongorana Must Resign From the Council of State and the Tema Oil Refinery (TOR) Board Chairmanship: What is Destroying the Vegetable Leaf is Right Behind it’.

This publication was later republished by several media organisations in Ghana and gained a lot of traction from readers on social media.

A lot of well wishers including residents of Talensi home and abroad were devastated and worried about the development due to the high profile personality involved, a traditional ruler with high reputation for that matter.

The second publication was on June 9, 2019 with the headline ‘Tongorana Must Be Removed from Council of State and TOR board’.

This also sparked and created more confusion in the Talensi Traditional Area barely three weeks after publication.

The Tongraan, then, decided to seek justice and redress at the law courts.

Presiding judge His Honour Malcolm Bedzrah, at the Circuit Court in Bolgatanga, gave the final verdict for the case on Friday, July 30.

The Court found that the comments published were defamatory and were published on several media platforms including New Crusading Guide.

Having found that the publication was defamatory, the Court sought from the defendants if they have any evidence on record to show that their allegations were true since the allegations were founded on the commission of crime.

Howver, there was no evidence on record to show that the plaintiff had committed the offence alleged by the defendants.

The defendants were ordered to retract and apologize to the plaintiff personally and publish same through the same medium of publication.

The Bolgatanga Circuit Court, having found that the plaintiff did not plead or ask for special damages, awarded general damages of GH¢30,000.00 and a cost of GH¢10,000 against the defendants, who were represented by Samuel Sapark, Charles Boazor, Augustine Guure, Bismarck Zumah and Albert Naa.

By Rabiu Tanko Mohammed||Ghana