Abam Bocey's widow wins defamation suit, Ali Puteh ordered to pay RM60,000 in damages

18 Feb 2022 08:19pm

KUALA LUMPUR - The widow of comedian Abam Bocey, Siti Nor Hidayah Mohd Ali performed the 'sujud syukur' (prostration of gratitude) after the Sessions Court here today ruled in her favour over a suit she filed against her brother-in -law, Ali Puteh, who is also a comedian, over a derogatory statement on his Instagram account two years ago.

Judge Zulqarnain Hassan, in allowing the suit by Siti Nor Hidayah, 30, ordered Ali Puteh, whose real name is Syed Ali Mubarak Syed Mohd Ridzuan, 34, to pay general damages of RM60,000 and RM13,000 in costs to the woman.

The court also allowed Siti Nor Hidayah's application for an injunction to prevent Syed Ali Mubarak from publishing any defamatory statement against her.

Siti Nor Hidayah filed the suit in May 2020 over statements made by Ali Puteh on his Instagram account, among others, describing the woman as an evil wife and greedy for her husband's inheritance.

Meanwhile, in the same proceeding, the court dismissed with cost of RM13,000 a defamation suit filed by Syed Ali and three members of his family against cosmetics entrepreneur Datuk Seri Aliff Syukri Kamarzaman and Siti Nor Hidayah over a live interview on the entrepreneur’s Youtube channel.

The three family members were Syed Ali's mother, the late Sabariah Arshad; father, Syed Mohd Ridzuan Syed Hassan and eldest sister, Sharifah Norwahidah.

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They claimed that Aliff Syukri had conspired with Siti Nor Hidayah to discredit and humiliate them by publishing and uploading the live interview on YouTube channel.

Zulqarnain, when reading out his judgment, said Ali Puteh’s post in his Instagram on Feb 10, 2020, had degraded the dignity and was derogatory against Siti Nor Hidayah.

"The words were very harsh and excessive, as if, the widow (plaintiff) was an alien species whose job was to rob other people’s property without any feelings. If words like ‘you are stupid’ or ‘you are evil’ are derogatory, what’s more with the word ‘animal’?

"If the words were used against an ailing patient in a hospital bed, the patient would try to get up and defend her dignity, (but), this was pointed at a woman who had just lost her husband a few days ago...she was still sad with the passing of her life partner, concerned about how she would raise her child, who is about one-year-old,” said the judge.

Zulqarnain said after examining the testimony of all the witnesses, the court was satisfied that the party that was after the property was not the wife of the deceased, but a member of the family.

"This is clear because on the second day after (Abam Bocey’s) death, his family members were the ones who wanted to discuss the deceased's property without taking into consideration the widow’s feeling.

The deceased's phone was taken by Syed Ali and the wallet by his mother (the late Sabariah Arshad).

On Aliff Syukri’s involvement, the judge said the court was satisfied that the entrepreneur had no malicious intent to conspire with the deceased's wife to defame the plaintiffs.

The court also found that Aliff Syukri conducted the interview because he wanted to help the deceased's wife, he added.

Meanwhile, Siti Nor Hidayah, represented by lawyer Mohamed Ibrahim Mohamad, when met by reporters after the proceedings, said she was grateful for today's decision.

Syed Ali, who was present with his lawyer, Noorazmir Zakaria, said he respected and accepted the court's decision with an open heart and would file an appeal at the High Court. - BERNAMA

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