Crime & Courts

Court tells Anwar to respond to Pendang MP's LCS project claim by May 30

KUALA LUMPUR: Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim has been instructed to submit his response to Pendang Member of Parliament Datuk Awang Solahuddin's defence in relation to the defamation lawsuit filed by the former against the latter.

High Court deputy registrar Aisyaf Falina Abdullah during a case management today said the plaintiff (Anwar) must file the document before May 30.

She also fixed May 31 for next case management.

Awang Solahuddin in his defence statement claimed that the Tambun MP had stopped criticising the Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) project and Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi after he became the deputy prime minister.

Awang Solahuddin claimed that Anwar did not issue any statements against Barisan Nasional (BN) especially Zahid who is the coalition's chairman ever since Anwar became the Prime Minister.

He claimed no authority had investigated or prosecuted any individual in connection to the LCS scandal since Nov 24 last year.

Anwar, 75, filed the suit against Awang Solahuddin on March 3, over the latter's defamatory remarks of the prime minister at Parliament lobby.

Anwar claimed that Awang Solahuddin had uttered defamatory remarks against him at a press conference at the Parliament lobby when attending the Dewan Rakyat sitting on Feb 21.

He said the remarks, which were recorded in audio and video forms, had been published and caused to be made public.

"On Feb 21, the defamatory remarks from the audio and video footage were published or caused to be published by the defendant on TikTok using the account name @asriasri64chanel," he said in his statement of claim.

The PKR president also said the MalaysiaKini portal had, on the same day on Feb 21, republished part of the defamatory remarks in two of its articles in Malay and English titled "MP PAS: Sikap pendendam Anwar lebih teruk daripada Mahathir" and "Why no LCS charges, MP asks 'more vindictive than Mahathir' PM".

Anwar said the remarks implied that he was vindictive and revengeful and had abused his power as Prime Minister and Minister of Finance by interfering, disrupting and arbitrarily instructing law enforcers and prosecutors in Malaysia to achieve his personal political agenda.

He claimed that Awang Solahuddin had deliberately and maliciously uttered and published the defamatory remarks to incite the public and create personal hatred against the prime minister who was now leading the legitimate unity government and was committed to combating all forms of corruption.

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