Minister Demands Sh700 Million Over ‘Rich Man, Poor Man’ Story

The junior minister for Urban Development, Mariam Najjemba, has sued the Vision group-owned Bukedde newspaper for defamation.

She wants Shs 700m in damages, over a story related to her marriage life. Through her lawyer Simon Peter M Musoke from KMT aocates, Najjemba has ran to High court Civil division and the paper has been given only fifteen [15] days to file its defence in court.

On top of the Shs 700m compensation, Najjemba is also demanding an apology and permanent injunction banning the paper from writing about her. On March 24, the paper carried a story with the headline “Minisita Najjemba abuuziza abolonzi abamutawaanya ku byokunoba okuva ew’omwavu n’ogenda ew’omugagga kabi ki?” This is Luganda for “Minister asks voters what is wrong with leaving a poor man for a wealthy one”.

She contends the story damaged her reputation before the public and her constituents.

Najjemba dismissed the story as “entirely false, baseless and unfounded”. She hopes that the court process will shed light on the source of the newspaper’s information.

The minister, who legally divorced Professor Herbert Muyinda with whom they have children, to remarry Hajji Muyanja Mbabaali, says there are some people trying to use this publication to taint her name.

“This story is certainly false because I have never said all what was written. Yes the meeting took place in Gomba, but we were discussing other issues, I never discussed my marriage affairs. How can I start discussing my former husband with whom I have children?” she said.

“How can you say that Muyinda is a poor man when you have a picture of this expensive house? Can a poor man own such a house? I know there are people behind all this, but I will leave no stone unturned,” she added.

Source : The Observer

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