Kano Magistrate Court Summons WikkiTimes over Alleged Defamation, Cyberstalking

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Haruna Mohammed Salisu
Publisher of WikkiTimes

A magistrate court sitting in Kano has summoned WikkiTimes, a Bauchi-based investigative and data journalism platform, over an investigative story which some construction companies indicted in the story alleged was defamatory and amounts to cyberstalking.

WikkiTimes had published an investigation about six construction companies involved in the building of 20 units of one block of two classrooms with furniture, toilets, and offices in selected locations across the three senatorial zones in Kano. The named companies are S.A.T Engineering Service Ltd, M. Sulum Nigeria Ltd, Emacs Engineering Consultant, Pyramid Investment, MGK Global Service Ltd and Haitel Nig Ltd.

Titled: How Nomadic Education Commission, Contractors Siphoned About N290m In Classroom Projects In Kano state, the story alleged that the “six briefcase companies were used by Nomadic Education Commission to divert N290 million.”

However, S.A.T Engineering Service Ltd, M. Sulum Nigeria Ltd and their owner, Alhaji Surajo Marshal, and Haitel Nigeria Ltd through their counsel, Habiba Abdullahi Umar Esq filed a criminal lawsuit before Magistrate Court 18, Justice AB Wali Complex, Gyadi-Gyadi, Kano State.

They described the publication as “untrue, malicious, unfounded and wicked,” and accused WikkiTimes of cyber stalking and defamation of character “pursuant to the provision of Cybercrime (Prohibition and Prevention Etc) Act, 2015 and section 393 of the Penal Code Law of Kano State (Cap 89 Laws of the Northern Nigeria.)

The presiding Chief Magistrate, Auwal Yusuf Sulaiman, will on January 9, 2023, read the criminal charges to WikkiTimes and its reporter, Elijah Ajoki, authored the report.