The NRM chairman for Kayunga district claims that the minister portrayed him as a killer, land grabber and fugitive among other things
The High Court has given the state minister for information and communication technology, Ida Erios Nantaba, 15 days to defend herself over alleged defamatory remarks she made against businessman Moses Kalisa Karangwa.
The deputy registrar of the Civil Division of the High Court, Sarah Langa, summoned Nantaba on Monday following a suit by Karangwa in which he accuses Nantaba of defaming him while appearing on Radio Simba, a radio station based in Bukoto, a suburb of Kampala.
"Whereas the above-named plaintiff has instituted a suit against you. You are hereby required to file a defence in the said suit within 15 days from the date of service of the summons," Langa said.
Langa warned that failure by Nantaba to file her defence on or before mentioned dates, the court will proceed with the suit and a judgement could be given in her absence.
In his suit, Karangwa also the National Resistance Movement chairman for Kayunga district, says that Nantaba while appearing on Radio Simba and Nation Television on October 6 and October 11 respectively allegedly portrayed him as a killer, land grabber, a thief, a criminal, a person who is above the law, a fugitive and a person not fit to live in society.
Nantaba is said to have suggested that Karangwa is a murderer backed by generals in the army to grab land and that he is the only civilian who moves with guns.
Karangwa contends that Nantaba's utterances were malicious in their natural and ordinary meaning and have reportedly damaged his reputation as a businessman and a politician.
"I am a businessman who does business in Uganda and who imports merchandise from many countries and the said words have greatly injured my reputation," Karangwa contends.
Karangwa also says that Nantaba's alleged utterances caused ridicule and lowered his esteem among the eyes of the right-thinking members of the society.
Karangwa wants a permanent injunction restraining Nantaba from making the same or similar statements against him.
He is also seeking general and punitive damages against Nantaba at an interest rate of 27% per annum in addition to the cost of the suit.
Karangwa says that unless the court intervenes, Nantaba will allegedly continue with the said malicious utterances to his detriment that could lead him to suffer irreparable damages.
Karangwa and Nantaba have been at loggerheads over leadership in Kayunga district.
Nantaba has recently been in the spotlight following the death of Ronald Ssebulime who the minister suspected was trailing her.