KUALA LUMPUR: Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak and his wife are seeking for a stay of proceedings in his suit against PKR vice-president Rafizi Ramli and Media Rakyat portal owner Chan Chee Kong in relation to an article on the removal of oil subsidies.
Chan’s counsel Joanne Leong told reporters that the hearing of stay of proceedings has been fixed for Oct 26 and to be heard before Justice Noraini Abdul Rahman.
Leong said Najib and Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor filed the application pending disposal of their appeal at the Court of Appeal.
“The appeal hearing against the dismissal of plaintiffs’ application to strike out Mohd Rafizi’s defence of fair comment has been fixed on Nov 28,” she said after meeting High Court deputy registrar Nurul Ain Hamzah in chambers.
Counsel Nik Alia Nik Hanafi appeared for Najib and Rosmah while counsel Ng Siau Sun acted for Mohd Rafizi.
On Apr 15, Justice Noraini dismissed Najib and Rosmah’s application to strike out a defence of fair comment by Rafizi and Chan, stating that she decided to hear merits of the suit in a trial.
Both filed the application on grounds that the disputed words were “statement of facts and not statement of comments”.
In their suit, Najib and Rosmah said Rafizi had delivered a slanderous speech against them at a forum in Bandar Tun Razak on Nov 22, 2014 on issues relating to oil subsidies.
Najib said Rafizi had uttered offending words in respect of his office.
Rosmah said his words implied that she had committed a criminal act.
They said the recording of the speech had been uploaded Chan onto YouTube, Media Rakyat’s webpage and its Facebook page.
In the suit filed in April last year, Najib said the statement meant he had unlawfully stolen the people’s money in connection with the removal of oil subsidies for his personal gain.
In the statement of claim, the couple are seeking from Rafizi general, aggravated and exemplary damages for slander and libel.
The plaintiffs are also seeking general, aggravated and exemplary damages from Chan for libel.
The couple also want Chan to remove the recording from YouTube, Media Rakyat’s webpage and Facebook page with immediate effect from the date of judgment.