Court to hear Najib defamation suit against newspaper on Oct 7

Court to hear Najib defamation suit against newspaper on Oct 7
PHOTO: The Star/ANN

KUALA LUMPUR - The High Court here has fixed October to hear Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak defamation suit against Harakah over an article regarding 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) and his stepson.

Counsel Datuk Mohd Hafarizam Harun, who acted for Najib, told reporters that Justice Hue Siew Kheng fixed Oct 7 and 9 for trial.

Mohd Hafarizam said Justice Hue also fixed July 13 to hear Najib's application to strike out certain paragraphs in the Harakah managing director and writer Dr Rosli Yaakop and Harakahdaily portal editor-in-chief Taufek Yahya's defence dealing with fair comment and qualified privilege.

Justice Hue fixed the dates in chambers after meeting Mohd Hafarizam and counsel Mohamed Hanipa Maidin appeared for Dr Rosli and Taufek.

On March 18, Najib sued the two in relation to the article written by Dr Rosli on Feb 19 titled "Dana 1MDB biayai syarikat filem Riza Aziz? (Bhg 2) (Did 1MDB sponsor Riza Aziz's production company)", saying it contained defamatory words against him.

He claimed that the words implied that he had abused his power to obtain wealth from a questionable source for his personal interest and that of his family members.

The article, he said, also meant that he was involved in money laundering and had benefited from property investments in the United States.

Najib contended that Taufek had failed to practise responsible journalism by taking steps to verify the truth of the article.

Besides an apology as well as damages, he is applying for an injunction to restrain the defendants from further discussion or publication of the article.

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