Oboth v The New Vision Printing & Publishing Cooperation (CIVIL APPEAL NO. 12 OF 1990) [1991] UGSC 7 (27 February 1991);


Search Summary: 

The trial judge found allowed the appellant’s defamation
action against the respondent and awarded him general
damages of three hundred thousand shillings. The appellant
was dissatisfied with the quantum of damages and

Headnote and Holding: 

The court considered whether or not the appellant was
entitled to punitive damages. The court held that punitive or
exemplary damages could be awarded not merely to
compensate the plaintiff but to punish the defendant and
mark the outrageous nature of his conduct. The court was

satisfied that the respondent published the offending article
only once and were not asked to apologize but refused to do
so. The court accordingly concluded that the circumstances
of the case did not justify punitive damages.
The court considered whether or not the general damages
awarded by the respondent were adequate. The court held
that the rationale of awarding damages was to restore ,so
far as money could do so , the plaintiff to the position he or
she would have been in if the tort in question had not been
done to him. The court was satisfied that the appellant was
entitled to more than what he got and it was immaterial that
he came from a humble beginning. The court accordingly
increased the general damages to five hundred thousand


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