Former Standard Group journalist who defamed boss on Facebook over politics fined Ksh8 million

Standard Group Headquarters. [Photo Capital FM]

A Nakuru court has ordered a former Standard Group newspaper journalist Vincent Mabatuk to pay his former boss Ksh8 million as defamation cost after defaming him on Facebook.

Nakuru Law Courts Chief Magistrate JB Kalo found Mbatuk guilty of publishing information that defamed Alex Kiprotich who is SG’s Rift Valley regional editor.

Kiprotich had moved to court seeking an apology from Mbatuk and “retraction of similar prominence as the defamatory Facebook posts.”

He also sued Mbatuk or damages and spreading falsehoods. He told the court that Mbatuk’s post brought about psychological and emotional trauma.

In passing his judgment, Kalo said that Mbatuk was to pay Ksh6 million in damages and a further Ksh2 million to foot the cost of the case.

“On the quantum of damages payable, the court has considered the submissions by the counsel and the authorities relied on. The court has also considered comparable case law,” Kalo ruled

The frosty relationship between Mbatuk and his former boss stemmed from 2017 polls.

The two were supporting different candidates. It is reportedly said that Mbatuk was so charged about his boss’ choice of a candidate that he starts publishing information on Facebook to chide Kiprotich.

Kiprotich in his applications to the court says he found Mbatuk’s behaviours malicious because he was a professional who understood well the ethics of journalism and had always been well-mannered, of high integrity and reputable.