Tags: Malaysia | lawsuit | slander | Najib Razak | Rafizi Ramli

Malaysian PM and Wife Sue Opposition Lawmaker for Slander

Friday, 17 Apr 2015 06:30 AM

Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak and his wife have sued an opposition parliamentarian for slander over comments suggesting they manipulated fuel subsidies for personal gain, the lawmaker said Friday.

The lawsuit filed Thursday against Rafizi Ramli, vice president of the People's Justice Party, follows a wave of sedition and other charges against dozens of the ruling coalition's opponents over the past year, which has sparked concern for human rights in the country.

The lawsuit said Rafizi's comments, in a speech last December, implied that Najib and his wife, Rosmah Mansor, had "stolen public funds and thereby betrayed the people of Malaysia."

The suit called the remarks, which related to the lifting of government subsidies on fuel last year, a "grave slander and libel," and "utterly" false.

Rafizi, who has previously exposed alleged government corruption and mismanagement, defended his comments as in the "public interest" and vowed to fight in court.

"I will continue to voice my opinion and will not be cowed with the threat of a court action," he told AFP.

Najib is under pressure over his management of the economy, particularly allegations of possible corruption related to a state-owned investment vehicle he launched.

He also has been condemned by the opposition, international rights groups and the United Nations for a deepening crackdown on government critics, mainly through use of a tough anti-sedition law.

Rosmah, meanwhile, is a lightning rod for public criticism over her alleged luxurious lifestyle and purported influence over the premier.

The lawsuit seeks an apology and court-determined damages.

It also names the operator of an opposition-leaning YouTube channel — to which Rafizi's comments were uploaded — as a defendant.

Rafizi is currently facing separate charges of revealing confidential banking documents, after he exposed the alleged abuse of funds in a government beef-production scheme.

© AFP 2017

   
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Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak and his wife have sued an opposition parliamentarian for slander over comments suggesting they manipulated fuel subsidies for personal gain, the lawmaker said Friday.
Malaysia, lawsuit, slander, Najib Razak, Rafizi Ramli
296
2015-30-17
Friday, 17 Apr 2015 06:30 AM
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