By: Kelvin Chiringa
Long-time rector for the Namibia University of Science and Technology, Tjama Tjivikua’s defamation court case has refused to die down in the Windhoek High court despite an opportunity granted to him to have it solved amicably via mediation.
Tjivikua and his wife Neavera Tjivikua initially sued business man Tomy Tjaronda and wanted the court to have him stop publishing ‘malicious and damaging statements’ on social media after a business deal between both parties went soar.
Tjaronda has this week countered this application to shut him up by issuing an urgent court application in which he is challenging that this was tantamount to infringing on his right to freedom of speech.
Said Tjaronda in his argument, “Given the tersely pleaded case of the applicants, their case suffers from a fundamental deficiency in respect of requisites of an interdict aimed at preventing the publication of defamation statements.’’
Tjivikua is claiming that Tjaronda is demanding payment of N$2 million for a half-finished job whose deal had not been fully initiated.
Court papers seen by The Villager confirm that Tjivikua’s company, Waterberg Investments (PTY) LTD, won a land purchase deal with the City of Windhoek to develop a property on Erf 5425, Khomasdal (10 301 square metres).
The intention was for this to be developed into residential units (phase 1), commercial units (phase 2) and a service station (phase 3).
It was after this that Tjaronda is said to have approached Tjivikua informing him that he had financiers who would be keen to fund the project after which he would be paid a commission.
The deal between the two later did not go smooth resulting in Tjaronda pushing for his payment which, from the evidence of court papers, did not come.
Tjaronda has claimed that Tjivikua was known to use political muscles to deal with people.
Tjivikua has countered this by submitting that the business man was seeking to extort him through intimidation and threats.
The Tjivikuas further are in need of the court’s assistance to have Tjaronda remove all defamatory statements he posted on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.
Tjivikua accused Tjaronda of going as far as publicising their private text messages on social media accounts.
In his answering affidavit, Tjaronda lashed back at the Tjivikuas saying that the accusations he made against them amounted to a “fair comment”.
What has transpired this week is that the urgent application by Tjaronda was removed from the roll and the matter was postponed to case management on the April the 3rd.