Gareth Cliff’s legal team on Monday afternoon confirmed that Advocate Dali Mpofu has been appointed as the lead attorney in the defamation case he is threatening to file against M-Net.
News that Cliff intended filing a R25m lawsuit against M-Net for defamation and unfair dismissal broke early on Monday morning.
He is threatening to sue M-Net for R5m for defamation and another R20m for breach of contract after getting axed from Idols SA. Cliff’s team confirmed that legal papers were handed over to M-Net on Friday.
Cliff’s lawyer, Eric Mabuza, confirmed to website The Juice that Mpofu will be leading the defamation lawsuit.
“Mr Dali Mpofu has been appointed. Mr Mpofu was selected because we find him to be a very good counsel,” Mabuza said.
Cliff’s legal team gave M-Net until 2pm on Monday afternoon to respond to the lawsuit. However, there has been no response from the broadcaster yet.
“M-Net has not really got back to us but we are going ahead with the court process. We have no alternative. We must take action and expect to be in court on 26 January unless something happens before then,” Mabuza said. Mabuza explained that there has been no discussion of an out-of-court settlement yet, and that the ball is in M-Net’s court.
“It’s all in their hands. We have told them what we want and they must come back to us.”
Cliff was axed as a judge on Idols SA after the Penny Sparrow race debacle went viral. The radio jock landed in hot water over his comments on the matter.
“To be fired over this whole mess does seem unfair. M-Net has said as much. They said I’m not racist,” Cliff said shortly after the news first broke that he would no longer be part of the TV show. — The Juice