Azmin Ali denies making defamatory statements against Lim Guan Eng

29 Sep 2023 08:12pm
 Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali - FILE PIX
Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali - FILE PIX
PUTRAJAYA - Former Trade and Industry Minister Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali has refuted claims that he made any defamatory statements against former Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng in his speech during the 15th General Election (GE15) campaign in Lunas, Kedah, on Nov 12 last year.

In his statement of defence against the suit filed against him, Mohamed Azmin denied that he had uttered the word "langsi" when speaking at the campaign and put that the burden of proof should fall on Lim to prove that he (Mohamed Azmin) had uttered the word.

"It was never the defendant's intention to slander the plaintiff, in fact he only stated the things that happened when the plaintiff, together with the defendant led the Pakatan Harapan government from May 2018 until March 2020,” he said in his defence statement filed at the Sungai Petani High Court last Monday (Sept 25, 2023).

In his defence statement, Mohamed Azmin said he was only criticising the government at that time where Lim was part of the ruling administration and the government policies that were used against several companies.

In his lawsuit filed against Mohamed Azmin on April 17, Lim claimed that Mohamed Azmin had made defamatory statements against him at an event in Lunas, Kedah on Nov 12 last year before GE15 which was attended by media members covering the election campaign.

Lim claimed that Mohamed Azmin had potrayed him (Lim) as arrogant and his arrogance had scared the business community which was reported in The Star newspaper on Nov 13 last year.

In his statement of claim, Lim, who is also former Penang chief minister, said the offending statements which made specific reference to his alleged conduct during his tenure as Finance Minister had injured his character, credibility and reputation.

He said the statements in their natural and ordinary meaning among others claimed that he had abused his power as the then finance minister by using the government agencies for improper purposes.

Lim said the statements were defamatory and have disparaged him in his personal standing, his official capacity and profession.
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He is seeking general damages, aggravated and exemplary damages and an unconditional apology from Mohamed Azmin to be published in The Star newspaper and The Star Online.

Last Aug 8, the Sungai Petani High Court granted Lim's application to serve his defamation suit against Mohamed Azmin via substitute service by way of publishing it in the newspapers.

Substituted service is to deliver documents in public litigation in the form of letters, advertisements to be published in newspapers or any other method that allows the proceeding to gain the attention of the defendant after a personal delivery of documents cannot be effected - BERNAMA