Blogger Cyprian Nyakundi asked High Court Judge Msagha Mbogholi to dismiss contempt of court charge by Safaricom arguing that he was not served in person as required by law.
Safaricom had sued the blogger for defamation in June last year for publishing several posts both on his blog and his social media pages which it said were inaccurate and injured its reputation. When the court heard the case, it gave injunctions against Nyakundi through the newspaper against him making any remarks through himself, his assets and his agents regarding the ongoing case.
At the court yesterday, Safaricom’s lawyer Rosebella Nyonje said they served him through his law firm Nderu & Ngaruni Advocates.
The telco wanted the blogger committed to civil jail because he still went ahead to publish the posts, despite the court order.
In a related case also mentioned yesterday, Safaricom’s CEO Bob Collymore and former CEO Michael Joseph sued the same blogger Cyprian Nyakundi for defamation. However his lawyer Ann Nderu made a preliminary objection to the case, stating that the case was malicious.
Nyakundi’s lawyer told the court that her client had been arrested and held throughout the weekend and only released on Monday afternoon hence he could not be able to attend the court case. She asked the court to look at the arrest as part of a wider scheme to intimidate her client.
Over the weekend, Nyakundi was arrested at Galleria shopping mall, questioned at held over complaints by National Bank of Kenya (NBK) and Central Organization of Trade Unions (COTU) Secretary General Francis Atwoli. Atwoli took issue with him stating that he was the first to link him to the murder of former MP Hon. George Muchai. NBK are aggrieved over several posts he made alleging corruption among its top brass.
The Safaricom’s case will be heard on 27th July. Safaricom needs to file their responses to the objection of the contempt first and serve to the defendant. In the Bob Collymore and Michael Joseph’s case, it will be heard on July 18th.