PAS and trio propose settlement for libel suit

PAS and trio propose settlement for libel suit
International Trade and Industry Minister Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed.

KUALA LUMPUR - PAS and three others are negotiating to settle a libel and conspiracy suit filed by International Trade and Industry Minister Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed against them.

The three others are former PAS secretary-general Datuk Mustafa Ali and Harakahdaily news portal editor-in-chief Zulkifli Sulong and editor Azmi Yusof.

Mustapa's counsel Lew Cho Kang said the four defendants had proposed an amicable settlement in the civil dispute.

"We have to inform the judge on Oct 7 if all parties can agree to the terms for a possible settlement," he said yesterday.

PAS lawyer Nadzratun Naim Hammad Azizi confirmed that it was their proposal for a possible settlement and that it was currently being negotiated between the parties.

In his lawsuit, Mustapa sued PAS former vice-president Datuk Husam Musa, PAS, Mustafa, Zulkifli and Azmi for allegedly implying that he was involved in fraudulent activities.

Husam's lawyer Termizi Abdullah said his client had also requested for a meeting with Mustapa to discuss a possible settlement.

"We will also try to settle the claim," said Termizi.

The parties said High Court judge Justice Nor Bee Ariffin had set two days from Nov 12 to hear the suit if the mediation process failed.

In his statement of claim, Mustapa said Husam defamed him in a speech at a political gathering named "Pelancaran Kekal K" organised by PAS on March 23, 2013 at the Machang expo site in Kelantan.

He said that PAS, Mustafa and the news portal's editors had caused the publication of the speech by Husam on the following day.

In the suit filed on April 22, 2013, Mustapa said the defamatory words had meant that he abused his power for his own personal gain as well as other heads of Umno.

He is seeking damages for libel, conspiracy and malicious falsehood. He is also asking for an injunction against the defendants or their agents from further publishing untrue statements about him in the Harakah newspaper or its website or any other publication.

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