One of Ghana’s biggest warehouse and wholesale distributors, Fareast Mercantile owned by Imperial Logistics, has secured a court order to restrain Dubawa and its Editor, Nathan Gadugah, from further publishing contents of its Consuming Trash investigations.
The company secured an ex-parte order for interim injunction and served it on Dubawa and its Editor, days after DUBAWA had publicised its intentions to air a full documentary on the operations of Fareast Mercantile, part of which involved the sale of stocks (consumables and non-consumables) suspected to have expired.
The motion in part read: “It is hereby ordered that the 1st and 2nd Defendants/ Respondents by themselves, their Assigns, any Third Parties authorised, instructed and or connected with them are restrained from going ahead and publishing further false malicious and defamatory information either on the internet, or any social media platform (namely Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Youtube etc) or any other medium (whether written or verbal) anywhere in the world about the plaintiff/ Applicant’s Company’s business operations pending the final determination of the suit.”
The Plaintiff has since serving this order, also served Dubawa a motion on notice for interlocutory injunction which is pending in the court.
In a writ of summons, the company is also suing DUBAWA for what it claims to be false publications against Fareast Mercantile.
They are asking the court for damages, and costs, including legal costs.
The suit comes at a time when a suspect, Edward Sarpong, was arrested by the Police Criminal and Investigations Department (CID) on March 31 with over 700 cartons of expired Glade mini bought from Fareast Mercantile and conveyed to Accra’s Central Business District to be sold to unsuspecting consumers.
Months of painstaking investigations by Dubawa with evidence in pictures and videos led to the arrest of the suspect.
Dubawa had serialised its publications of the outcome of the investigations for over a month, with pictures, a trailer, e-mail conversations and was about to air its much publicised Consuming Trash documentary when the interim injunction and writ of summons were served on them by Fareast Mercantile.
The fact-checking organisation is therefore holding on to the publication of the documentary until the restraining order is further argued in court.
Samson Lardy Anyenin who is lead lawyer for the defendants says: “there is a fundamental irregularity with the ex-parte order that renders it liable to being vacated or quashed for being void. The law only allows such orders procured on the blindside of the affected party to last for ten days and not until the case is concluded as you found in this order.”
Meanwhile, Dubawa and its lawyers will this morning file a motion seeking to dismiss the entire suit.
The case which was supposed to have been heard on July 8, was rescheduled to today, July 14, due to the absence of the sitting judge.
DUBAWA will update its readers on the developments in the courtroom.