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Thursday, August 30, 2012

WWW1: Utusan told to pay Nizar damages

The Kuala Lumpur Civil High Court today ordered Utusan Melayu (M) Bhd to pay former Perak menteri besar Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin damages in a defamation suit he filed against the newspaper publisher last July.
Nizar's lawyer, Mohd Zamri Ibrahim, said the court made an interlocutary decision today as Utusan was not represented at the case hearing.
In view of that, Mohd Zamri said court registrar Mazuliana Abdul Rashid instructed him to file an assessment of damages which is to be claimed from Utusan.
“We must present the assessment as we had not determined how much we want in this suit,” Mohd Zamri said when contacted.
nizar jamaluddin win court case at duta court house 110509 01It is understood thatUtusan is no longer entitled to appeal the decision, but is allowed to apply to set aside today's decision as it was made in its absence.
When contacted, Nizar (left) said Utusan’s absence today showed that the daily was unable to defend its report which he says defamed him.
“They (Utusan) did not send a lawyer, signifying they cannot defend themselves,” he added.
Nizar has claimed that Utusan had on May 31 published a libellous statement pertaining to his statement on the purchase of the WWW1 vehicle licence plate number by the Johor sultan.
The former menteri besar alleged the defamatory statement, among others, implied that he was a traitor to sultans in general and the Johor sultan specifically, that he was an anti-sultan politician and one that was trying to instigate the rakyat to hate the Johor Sultan.
Sept 19 date for TV3 case decision
Meanwhile, Nizar’s other lawyer, Mohd Fitri Asmuni, said the court would decide on another suit by Nizar against broadcast station Sistem Televisyen Malaysia Bhd (TV3), on the same matter on Sept 19.
“TV3 just submitted its defence. So we replied and at the same time, the court asked TV3 to propose a settlement (with Nizar),” Mohd Fitri said when contacted.
He explained that TV3 had submitted its defence on Aug 22 in the case heard before judge Yeoh Wee Sian.
Nizar, who is also Pasir Panjang assemblyperson, had claimed that on May 30, TV3 had aired a report in its 8pm ‘Buletin Utama’ programme concerning a statement he had made on Twitter.
In an interview with Harakahdaily today, Nizar was quoted by the online PAS newsletter as saying that he was confident this string of events proved the Umno paper Utusan was not worth reading.
NONE“Before this Mahfuz (Omar) won (his defamation case against Utusan), Lim Guan Eng won and its (Utusan) reporterapologised to Karpal (Singh).
“So, what more is there for this paper to be read by the rakyat of this country.
“I will propose to our ulama to advise the rakyat to stop buying or reading this akhbar fitnah (lying newspaper),” he further toldHarakahdaily.

He then added that this case was in accordance with former prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s statement that BN was the “devil you know”.

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