Mengi faces editors on 100bn/- damages Thirteen editors and reporters are taking IPP Executive Chairman Reginald Mengi to court next week demanding a total of 100bn/- in damages for his malicious allegations against them and their newspapers. The damage includes 50bn/- for five newspapers and another 50bn/- for 13 editors and writers of the newspapers. At a press conference in Dar es Salaam today, the spokesman for the 13 editors and writers, Mr Prince Bagenda, said that the decision to sue Mr Mengi was reached after some of Mr Mengis newspapers carried malicious reports against them. According to Mr Bagenda, the tabloids spoiling for cash in damage claims include Taifa Tanzania, Umma Tanzania, Sauti Huru, Tazama and Nyundo - which claim to have been derided by some newspapers owned by Mr Mengi on grounds that they were being used by some major corrupt figures in the country to publish defamatory stories against Mengi. The editors and writers threatening to file charges against the businessman are Mr Julius Mapunda, Prince Bagenda, Erick Antony, Salum Mnette, Charles Charles, Albert Kawogo and Christopher Buke. Others are Anthony Maono, Charles Mhando, Bollen Ngetti, Zahaq Raship, Saleh Ally and one Kimwanga, whose name has since been struck off the list, according to Bagenda. They are all charging Mr Mengi of allegedly calling their newspapers mere fliers, financed by grand corrupt tycoons, and that the owners, editors and reporters of those newspapers were just as corrupt. We are legally registered how can Mengi call our papers mere fliers? This is clear defamation, Mr Bagenda said. He pointed fingers to some of the newspapers owned by Mr Mengi that wrote defamatory stories on them as Kulikoni and Nipashe which wrote in different issues last year and early this year that some corrupt figures in the country had established media outlets to destroy Mengi. That is ridiculous how did he categorize what he calls corrupt people when none of them have been implicated as corrupt elements in any judicial establishment we want him to prove that, he said. Mr Bagenda also defended the so-called errant tabloids, saying they were working to disclose some corrupt elements in the private sectors unlike some of the media outlets that were merely pointing fingers at corruption within the public sectors only. He said it was unfair to think the most corrupt organs and people were just those within the public sectors arguing that the private sector was also rotten. We want Mengi to be fair and use his media to also fight corporate corruption which is also notorious in private sector, he said. Bagenda, who is the Chairman of the Taifa Tanzania Editorial Board, also accused Mr Mengi of attempting to kill young and upcoming media outlets in a bid to consolidate his hold in the countrys media industry. He asserted that Mr Mengi was unwittingly painting a bad image of the country and, in effect, chasing away development partners and potential investors. The 13 editors and writers will next week instruct their lawyer to press Mengi to pay the damages. Along with Mr Mengi, the editors and writers are also charging Mr Michael Ngalo of Ngalo & Company for defamatory statements at a press conference last month.