Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Winfrey Settles Lawsuit Brought by Former Headmistress in South Africa

March 24, 2010, 11:21 am

Winfrey Settles Lawsuit Brought by Former Headmistress

New York Times

You may see Oprah Winfrey next week on her syndicated talk show, but you won’t be seeing the broadcasting queen in a Philadelphia courtroom.

On Tuesday Ms. Winfrey settled a defamation lawsuit filed by the former headmistress of a school she set up in South Africa, who had said that the talk show host had defamed her after a sex-abuse scandal there, Reuters reported. Nomvuho Mzamane ran the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls in South Africa at its founding in 2007 but left after students there said they were being abused by another staff member.

After Ms. Winfrey held a news conference and said that Ms. Mzamane had ignored the students’ complaints, Ms. Mzamane said Ms. Winfrey had defamed her and made it difficult for her to find another job.

A statement from lawyers representing both women said the dispute had been settled “peacefully to their mutual satisfaction” and both women had withdrawn their complaints, according to Reuters.

Terms of the settlement were not disclosed. A trial was scheduled to begin on Monday in federal court in Philadelphia, where Ms. Mzamane was living when she filed the suit.

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