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Defamation Suits: Khir Toyo Apologises To Abdul Khalid

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SHAH ALAM – The summon cases involving former Selangor menteris besar Dr Mohamad Khir Toyo and Tan Sri Abdul Khalid Ibrahim were resolved amicably through the mediation process with the former making a public apology to his successor in the High Court here today.

It was recorded by Judicial Commissioner M.Gunalan.

Reading a prepared statement, which was in Malay, Dr Mohamad Khir said hesincerely apologised to Abdul Khalid for the statements he made which were then published in the newspapers.

The first, with the title “Lexus is my own, says Khalid” was published in The New Straits Times, dated Jan 15, 2009, and the second, by Utusan Malaysia with the title “Lepaskan Jawatan MB” (Give Up the MB’s Post) on Jan 23, 2009.

He said the two statements, which he made in his capacity as the Opposition leader in Selangor at that time, might have tarnished or affected the good name, reputation, image and integrity of Abdul Khalid as the then Selangor Menteri Besar.

“I also promise that I will not repeat the act of making statements which are defamatory of him in future,” he added.

The two former menteris besar were the seen smiling and shook hands.

Earlier, lawyer Sankara Nair, representing Abdul Khalid, informed the court that the two parties had reached a settlement, with costs, through the mediation process and that the defendant (Dr Mohamad Khir) would make an open apology in the court.

Besides Sankara, another lawyer representing Abdul Khalid is K.Murali, while Dr Mohamad Khir is represented by lawyers M.Athimulan and Siti Maspuah Maulan.

Abdul Khalid filed the two suits, both named Dr Mohamed Khir as the plaintiff, on Feb 18, 2009, over the latter’s statements on the purchase of the Lexus car and 46 heads of cows for sacrifice.

In the statement of claim, Abdul Khalid alleged that the statements by Mohamad Khir directly or indirectly referred to him and implied, among others, that he was dishonest, unethical and had intentionally abused his position and public office for personal gain.

He also claimed Mohamad Khir had wrongfully received and displayed confidential official documents pertaining to the assumed malpractice with regard to the ‘sacrificial cattle’ without confirming the accuracy of the facts and subsequently making false allegations.

As such, he was seeking compensatory damages, aggravated damages, exemplary damages and an injunction to restrain Mohamad Khir from further uttering, speaking, writing or publishing the alleged defamatory statements.

Meanwhile, Abdul Khalid, when met by reporters after the court proceedings, said he accepted Dr Mohamed Khir’s apology and had agreed to settle the matter without asking for damages because he wanted to instil human values as they were
more meaningful compared with money.

“I hope this case will be a lesson to the society, especially politicians, to not make baseless accusations.

“After this, I and Dr Mohamad Khir, wull meet the people in Ijok (Kuala Selangor), Port Klang and Bandar Tun Razak to clarify the matter,” he added.

Dr Mohamad Khir said he was thankful to the court for giving him and Abdul Khalid the opportunity to go through the mediation process that they were able to settle the matter out of court. – BERNAMA

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