KUALA LUMPUR, April 6 – Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak is to send a letter of demand to Mohd Rafizi Ramli seeking an apology and withdrawal of an allegation that the Prime Minister misused funds from the Goods and Services Tax over the purchase of textile.
This was conveyed to reporters today by lawyer Datuk Mohd Hafarizam Harun after the case management of the libel suit filed by Najib against former MCA president Tun Dr Ling Liong Sik in chambers before High Court Judge Datuk John Louis O’Hara. Mohd Hafarizam said he received instructions from Najib yesterday to draw up and send the letter as soon as possible to the PKR vice-president.
Mohd Rafizi, who is also PKR secretary-general, made the alleged statement at a gathering calling for the abolition of the GST at Dataran Merdeka here on April 2. Mohd Hafarizam also said that Najib’s suit against Dr Ling would be heard before another judge as O’Hara today recused himself from the case to avert misperception as he and Dr Ling were alumni of the Royal Military College and were members of the Old Putera Association.\
“I and Dr Ling’s lawyer Villie Nethi did not object to the decision by O’Hara. The case will now be heard before High Court Judge Datuk Nor Bee Ariffin but a date for mention has not been set yet,” said Mohd Hafarizam. Najib had filed the suit against Dr Ling on Oct 27 last year over alleged defamatory remarks made against him while attending a ceremony at a university college that were published in an article on a news portal on Oct 3.
In his statement of claim, Najib, among others, sought an order for Dr Ling to publish a written apology to be published in newspapers or magazines to be identified by Najib, in a form and terms determined by him. Najib also sought an injunction to restrain Dr Ling, or through his servants or agents, from further speaking or publishing any defamatory article or any similar words defamatory to him.
He also sought general, special, aggravated and exemplary damages, costs and other relief deemed fit by the court. Najib said the plain and ordinary meaning of the words published in the article were understood to mean, among others, that he had misappropriated public funds into his personal account, that he had misused the funds for his personal interest, and he had misused the funds to gain wealth and profit for his personal gain and interest.
He also said that the plain and ordinary meaning of the words published in the article were understood to mean, among others, that he had misused government funds belonging to a government investment company, 1MDB, for his personal interests, he had abused his power as the leader of a political party and also the leader of people, and he was not competent or qualified to be the leader of the government or prime minister of Malaysia.