Minister sues Malaysiakini for defamation

20 Jan 2016 / 22:38 H.

    KUALA LUMPUR: Housing, Local Government and Urban Well-being minister Abdul Rahman has filed a defamation suit against Malaysiakini over a vox populi article entitled "Minister's go-back-to kampung notion draws contempt" and an accompanying video carried by Kinitv.
    Rahman, who is also an Umno supreme council member and Kota Belud MP, named the portal's owner Mkini Dotcom Sdn Bhd and journalist Geraldine Tong as defendants.
    According to a report in Malaysiakini, the suit was filed by law firm Raja Riza and Associates at the Kuala Lumpur High Court on Jan 13.
    The minister, who is also BN strategic director, claimed the Malaysiakini article and video — which carried short interviews with members of the public — was defamatory and false and that the video was referring to him specifically.
    He alleged the article and video meant that he was not concerned over the rising cost of living and problems faced by the society and that he was not sensitive to the current situation faced by the people.
    In his affidavit, he also claimed that they also meant that he was selfish and not concerned with society's well-being and that workers migrating to urban areas for jobs did not bring benefits.
    Rahman further alleged that the defendants knew the publication of the article would affect his reputation and credibility and that the publication and video was edited to take his remarks out of context for the defendants' own interests.
    The minister claimed this was done to seek publicity, sensationalise for the financial interests of the news portal.
    Rahman's affidavit said the publication of the article and video had affected his reputation and dignity, had his standing lowered in the eyes of the society besides exposing him to public odium and affecting his credibility.
    He is thus seeking general, aggravated and exemplary damages and an apology for the publication of the article and video.
    He is further seeking an injunction barring the defendants from publishing or reproducing the said article and video.

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