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Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Rafizi and portal owner counter sue Najib, Rosmah

They say the suit was an abuse of the court process and is an attempt to stifle and stymie legitimate political discourse.
KUALA LUMPUR: PKR vice-president Rafizi Ramli and Media Rakyat portal owner Chan Chee Kong have filed a counter-claim against a defamation suit by Prime Minister Najib Razak and his wife, Rosmah Mansor.
In the counter-claim filed on May 29, Rafizi and Chan stated, among others, that the suit was an abuse of the court process and it was an attempt by the two plaintiffs to stifle and stymie legitimate political discourse.
The duo also sought general damages, costs and other relief deemed fit by the court.
Meanwhile, lawyer Choo Shi Jin, representing Najib and Rosmah, told reporters after meeting High Court Judge Noraini Abdul Rahman in chambers today that the defendants had informed the court of their intention to amend their statements of defence and counter claim.
The court had ordered them to file the amendments by July 8 and the plaintiffs would submit the reply to their amended defence statements and counter claim on July 22, he added.
Choo said the court also set August 5 for case management of the suit.
Najib and Rosmah filed the suit on April 16, claiming that Rafizi made a disparaging statement against them at a forum on oil subsidy in Bandar Tun Razak on November 22 last year.
They alleged that Rafizi’s speech was recorded by ‘Media Rakyat’, and uploaded by Chan or his assistant on Media Rakyat’s Youtube and portal, titled, ‘Rafizi Ramli: Kenapa Kita Pertahankan Subsidi Minyak’.
Najib and Rosmah further allege that Chan had also shared the recording in Media Rakyat’s Facebook which could be freely accessed by internet users worldwide.
The plaintiffs also alleged that the recording had been viewed 9,736 times on Youtube as of April 15, while there are 356,569 users who are following Rafizi on Facebook and 162,118 users who are following Chan.
Najib and Rosmah alleged that Rafizi had maliciously intended for his statement to be published by the mass media and read by the public.
They alleged that Chan had failed to practise “responsible journalism” by not verifying or investigating the authenticity of the accusations in the statement before posting them.
The couple are seeking general, aggravated and exemplary damages deemed fit by the court, interest and costs.

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