Cllr. Anna Mbachu’s High Court claim to have been libelled thrown out, leaving her with a £34,000 bill UPDATED

After attending the High Court for the Waltham Forest Echo last week, Local Democracy Reporter, Josh Mellor, brings news that Councillor Anna Mbachu has lost a libel action in spectacular fashion, leaving her with a £34,000 bill, £15,000 of which must be paid within 21 days, with leave to appeal refused.

Cllr. Mbachu claimed that, in 2018, she had been called a ‘“liar”’ and a ‘“vile deceptive pig”’ in a series of posts written by mental health professional, and former colleague, Eze Ihenacho.

However, in court Cllr. Mbachu failed to produce the originals of these alleged posts, as required by the judge, and so her case was dismissed.

Regular readers will recall that Cllr. Mbachu is no stranger to controversy.

In May 2011, Cllr. Mbachu was censured by the LBWF Standards Committee for, when mayor, publicly threatening to slap her chauffeur, an action for which she subsequently apologised.

In May 2017, Cllr. Mbachu appeared at an Employment Tribunal, answering a claim which turned on how she had managed a junior colleague at the NHS trust they both worked for who had suffered a period of illness.

The judge found that Cllr. Mbachu’s management style was, to put it mildly, lacking, observing at one point in his summation:

‘Without reasonable and proper cause, Ms Mbachu avoided and failed to communicate with the claimant about sensitive matters vital to the claimant’s return to work so as to enable the claimant to return to work at an appropriate time…Ms Mbachu then failed to demonstrate the sensitivity needed and instead reacted with hostility in a manner which – looked at objectively – was humiliating for the claimant’.

The judge also concluded that Cllr. Mbachu’s evidence was ‘confusing’, and in part could not be relied upon.

In these circumstances, it is unsurprising to find that the claimant won the case.

And, finally, later the same year, Cllr. Mbachu’s register of interests forms also attracted negative comment, though in the end she was let off with a light tap by the kindly Mark Hynes, Director of Governance and Law…only to see the same issue re-surface in 2020 (see the links below).

All in all, that is quite some record, and perhaps suggests that Cllr. Mbachu is not the wise elder stateswoman that she sometimes likes to present herself as.

ADDENDUM

It appears that Cllr. Mbachu’s problems are not confined to Waltham Forest, the NHS, or the High Court, as a recent story at nigerianwatch.com reveals:

https://www.nigerianwatch.com/nigerias-uk-councillors-split-in-two-with-one-faction-suspending-former-waltham-forest-mayor-anna-mbachu/

UPDATE

The original version of this post reported that Cllr. Mbachu’s humiliation in court had left her with a £15,000 bill, but that was an error.

In fact, she has to pay £34,000 in total, with £15,000 due as a first instalment in 21 days, and leave to appeal refused.

A big thank you to those who helped this blog set the record straight, not least Mr. Stuart Stevens and Mr. Lloyd Addison of Holborn Chambers.

Related Posts

Cllr. Anna Mbachu, accusations of bullying, and an embarrassing Employment Tribunal verdict

Cllrs Anna Mbachu and Victoria te Velde: register of Interests controversy re-surfaces UPDATED

Cllr. Limbajee, Cllr. Mbachu, their register of interests forms, and LBWF’s Director of Governance and Law Mark Hynes: the controversy continues

Cllr. Anna Mbachu’s register of interests form prompts new controversy UPDATED

Cllr. Anna Mbachu’s register of interests form prompts new controversy

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