Mpofu sues colleague $10 million for defamation

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By Mary Taruvinga

Zanu PF secretary for administration Obert Mpofu has dragged Lewis Matutu to court accusing the party deputy secretary for the youth league of scandalising him through claims the former cabinet minister formed a clique of very corrupt individuals linked to the ruling party.

Matutu in June publicised, at a press conference, a list of names including senior party and government officials who he said were behind the current chaos within the economy.

Mpofu, central bank governor John Mangudya, businessman Wicknell Chivayo and others made Matutu’s list.

A former Minister of Mines, Mpofu is now demanding $10 million defamation damages and also that Matutu makes a public apology to him.

The former minister filed summons against Matutu on Monday claiming that the allegations were false and degrading.

“The claims, allegations and assertions made by the defendant (Matutu) are false, malicious, scandalous, wrongful and defamatory of plaintiff (Mpofu) in the extreme, in that on their plain and ordinary meaning, they allege corruption by the plaintiff and were intended by the defendant and understood by his audience and all the readers of the statement to mean that plaintiff is a corrupt politician,” reads part of the summons.

“The statement also meant that the plaintiff is dishonest and cruel and that plaintiff is undermining socio-economic transformation in Zimbabwe because of his corrupt proclivities.”

According to the summons, Matutu said Mpofu has caused untold suffering to the current generation because of his corrupt inclinations.

“As a result of the defamatory statement made by the Defendant, Plaintiff has been damaged in his reputation and has suffered damages in the amount of $10 million,” Mpofu said.

The statement was published on July 24 this year.

Matutu is yet to respond.

Recently, Matutu was slapped with a $4 million lawsuit over the same allegations by South Africa based businessman, Frank Buyanga.

He is again yet to respond to the lawsuit.