A United Nations (UN) official Emmanuel Chinyamakobvu, who was taken to court by a High Court judge over defamation of character, has now accepted liability and was ordered to pay $1 300 for his actions.

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Chinyamakobvu, who works for the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification, was taken to court by now High Court judge Justice Nyaradzo Priscilla Munangati-Manongwa, who at the time of filing the litigation, was a senior lawyer representing the UN official’s estranged wife, Sheila Muzambe, in a divorce matter.

However, when the matter was set to be entertained by High Court judge Justice Charles Hungwe on Wednesday this week, the parties found common ground after Chinyamakobvu accepted liability and offered to compensate the judge for his remarks.

According to the court papers, the incident giving rise to the litigation occurred on November 27, 2014, when Chinyamakobvu “intentionally and wrongfully published defamatory material” pertaining to the judge through an email addressed to his erstwhile spouse, Sheila.

The said email, the court heard, was blindcopied to Justice Munangati-Manongwa’s office and was received through her main email domain, leading to it being accessed by her then employees.

The judge further said in her affidavit that a request through Chinyamakobvu’s lawyers to ask the UN official to desist from directly writing to his wife’s lawyer, had “met with more vitriol disdain”, leading to the filing of a lawsuit.

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