GLENCORE has discontinued its defamation suit against the Daily Nation Newspapers.
The Nation was sued for publishing a story that stated that President Edgar Lungu was opposed to the decision by Mopani to lay off 4000 workers as a survival measure from the huge debt overhang it was facing.
A notice of discontinuation has been submitted to the High Court, by its lawyers Messrs Eric Silwamba, Jalasi and Linyama.
But in opposing the suit, Daily Nation Managing Editor Richard Sakala said the company had instructed its lawyers to vigorously and robustly oppose an injunction Glencore had applied for to gag the paper from reporting on developments in the mine.
Glencore, he said, was a major player in the economy and its decision to close mines and lay off workers was too critical, “We have a duty to protect national interest, by every means possible.” He said.
The “offending” article reported that President Lungu was making it difficult for Glencore, the owners of Mopani and Katanga mines in DR Congo, to shut down the mines because he did not want the mine to lay off up to 4,000 workers.
The firm applied to the High Court for an injunction to restrain the Daily Nation or its servants or agents from further publishing anything they deemed defamatory.
But in a dramatic turn of events, Glencore has decided to pull out of the action.