A Chinese daily reporter has filed a defamation suit against Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng at the Penang High Court today.
Met at the court house, Ong Beng Siang said: "My main intention for doing this is to clear my name, defend my dignity and that of my comrades in the profession".
Ong, 40, has been a reporter at Guang Ming Daily for 23 years, and claimed to have a respected reputation among his peers.
His lawyer Baljit Singh said a letter of demand had been sent to Lim on March 6 but there has not been a reply from the CM.
"We are filing the suit over Lim's allegations that Ong is unethical, unprofessional and is out to topple the Penang government," Baljit said after filing the suit at the court today.
"The allegations against Ong are very serious, as it is a very serious claim against any reporters," added Baljit, who is also Gerakan's legal and human rights bureau chief.
"He is seeking an apology, aggravated and exemplary damages from Lim for his remarks, which in its original, normal form and innuendoes, make Ong out to be unprofessional, unethical in his duties, immoral, insincere, untrustworthy, and unprincipled".
On Jan 22, Lim reportedly remarked in his Facebook that there are reporters who wish to tarnish the reputation of the Penang government, and if they wish to topple the government, please use facts instead of publishing baseless reports".
Lim was upset with Ong for publishing a report which alleged that the board of directors of Chung Hwa 3 had decided not to build another branch on a plot of land provided by the state government due to its strict policies.
However, the school's directors had denied the report, saying their decision not to build another branch was not related to the state government.
This prompted Lim to issue the statement against Ong, which he deemed offensive.- Mkini