Caged: Inside the power tussle that consumed El-Rufai
Nasir El-Rufai, former governor of Kaduna State

A High Court in Kaduna, on Thursday, dismissed a defamation suit filed by Nasir el-Rufai, immediate past governor of the state, against Shehu Sani, a former senator representing Kaduna central.

The former governor had sought N2 billion in damages over comments credited to the former lawmaker.

In the suit filed in 2018, the former governor said Sani defamed him by referring to him as a “drunk, loose cannon and an embarrassment to President Muhammadu Buhari”.

El-Rufai claimed that Sani’s statements are totally false and injurious to his person in the eyes of the public.

Giving his verdict on Thursday, H.A.L Balogun, the presiding judge, said the suit is an abuse of court processes.

Balogun said the same case was filed by el-Rufai in different courts in the state.

When hearing in the case began, Kimi Livingstone Appah, counsel to Sani, had drawn the attention of the court to the fact that the former governor filed the same case in four different courts in the state.

The judge agreed with Appah’s preliminary objection and dismissed the case.

Speaking with reporters after the verdict was given, Appah said: “This is a victory for democracy and freedom of expression”.

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