Five people are summoned to court as Mercy Chinwo and her husband file a lawsuit regarding their son’s paternity claims.

For “criminal defamation” of the reputations of gospel singer Mercy Chinwo and her husband Pastor Blessed Uzochikwa, five social media users have been summoned by an Abuja magistrate court.

Chief Magistrate Emmanuel Iyanna directed the five defendants to appear in person before the court on April 23, 2023, to respond to the charges against them, in the court summons dated April 3, 2024.

Mercy and Blessed are the complainants in this case, and Okoronkwo Ejike, Kingsley Ibeh, DJ Spoiltkid, Terrence Ekot, and Samuel Agozie are the five defendants.

The gospel singer and her husband shared a photo of their son on Instagram last week, prompting the defendants to file a paternity claim.

Following the 2023 baby’s Instagram photo leak, the defendants claimed to be the father, claiming there was a likeness between the child and another gospel singer, Nathaniel Bassey.

Their claim went viral. In a criminal complaint, Mercy Chinwo and her spouse claimed that the defendants had engaged in cyberstalking, injurious lying, and cyber intimidation directed against them.

The complainants’ attorneys, lead by Pelumi Olajengbesi of the Abuja-based media company Law Corridor, submitted the complaint.

The complainants claimed that the defendants’ purported conduct violated Sections 24 (1)(B) of the Cybercrimes (Prohibition, Prevention etc.) Act 2015 and Section 391 of the Penal Code.

The “individuals criminally injured the reputation and image of the complainants across the globe resulting from their intentional defamatory posts and an act of cyberstalking,” In a criminal complaint submitted to the magistrate, the attorneys stated.

The five defendants were then ordered by Magistrate Emmanuel Iyanna to come before the court on April 23, 2024, to respond to the charges.

This follows Nathaniel Bassey’s request for the police to look into and punish those claiming to be Mercy Chinwo’s son’s father.

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