Durban - New York-based power sector firm in the electricity generation, transmission, and distribution industry, Symbion, has accused the Daily Maverick of peddling and publishing lies.
This was after the Daily Maverick published an article linking the company with South African businessman Vivian Reddy and his family and alleged that Reddy’s son Shanthan had resigned from the company as a director.
In the article published by Branko Brckic’s Newspaper, the publication alleged that the US firm Symbion, once associated with Durban’s Vivian Reddy and family, was being sued in a New York court for corruption.
In a statement issued on Wednesday by Symbion, the company said: “Daily Maverick, which claimed to be running under the banner “Defend Truth” had published a defamatory and misleading article.”
“Daily Maverick, without ever attempting to contact Symbion or its executives (and falsely saying that it did), in the article regurgitates a series of statements which are false in a New York proceeding that Maverick falsely calls a “lawsuit.” In fact, the proceeding in New York is a procedure to obtain documents and information only but appears to be a thinly disguised attempt to injure Symbion by a former business associate, Zouzar Bouka, who is entangled in a confidential arbitration that Symbion initiated against him.
“In fact, contrary to the false statements in the Daily Maverick article, Symbion has never had any business with Reddy. Symbion does not intend to rebut each and every false and defamatory statement in a press release and will, instead, initiate legal action and pursue financial damages. These court filings will be publicly available,” read Symbion's statement.
On Tuesday, Reddy issued a statement rubbishing the Daily Maverick. He said that the reports published in the Daily Maverick were part of a smear campaign against him and was not “unsettled” by the false claims.
“The claimed association of my family with Symbion is an outright falsehood and disinformation engineered to bring the Reddy family’s name into disrepute.
“None of Reddy’s entities, or Reddy himself, has ever owned or been a subsidiary of Symbion. Reddy’s son, Shantan, has never been a director, employee, or associate of Symbion; therefore, the claims that he resigned as a director are patently false.
“The Daily Maverick report is a carefully crafted conflation propaganda smear that sought to weave the Reddy name into an article about a company they have absolutely no relationship with,” Reddy said.
He further accused the publication of regurgitating old stories of the “Zuma link” and the baseless claims from the discredited propaganda book about Ace Magashule and for misrepresenting the forensic investigation findings on a City Power contract done over 10 years ago, which found no wrongdoing by Edison Power, a firm Reddy was involved in.
Approached for comment, Daily Maverick’s Editor Brkic said that he was sticking by his story.