Arub Ibrahim Khatri has been awarded Ksh. 6 million in damages after wining a defamation case. The suit had been filed against Nelson Marwa, PS for Labor and Social Protection.
The Mombasa county Assembly speaker lodged a defamation suit following utterances made on January 13, 2017 by Nelson Marwa (then the Coast Province regional coordinator). The plaintiff complained over public remarks made by the defendant which painted him as a notorious drug lord.
In the High Court judgement made by Hon Justice Dora Chepkwony, the defendant was found guilty of slander. She ordered the defendant to pay the plaintiff Ksh. 5 million in general damages and an extra Ksh. 1 million in exemplary damages.
“Allegations that the plaintiff is a suspected drug baron is serious in nature as it is common knowledge that the drug menace is an emotive issue,” read part of the judgement.
The court further issued a permanent injunction blocking Marwa from defaming or intimidating Khatri. Part of the judgment stated that the accused conduct where he failed to apologize and retract the scathing statements had created a huge dent to the plaintiff’s public reputation and security.
The court stated that on balance of probabilities they had found absolutely no evidence linking the plaintiff as a drug dealer. They relied on the fact that the Mombasa County Assembly speaker had neither been implicated or charged with any offence involving the possession of drugs or firearms.
Khatri had argued that he had suffered many woes ever since Marwa had leveled the unsubstantiated rumors against him. He stated that his two marriage proposals to different ladies had been turned down, stating that no one was willing to associate with him after the remarks made by Marwa. “I have suffered a lot and I am still suffering. I am young and it is difficult to get married. I was turned down two times, ” he was quoted. “The statements by the defendant were injurious, slanderous, and likely to cause me harm and expose me to feelings of hatred.”
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