Press Statement by Raja Syarafina Raja Shuib, Special Legal Officer to YAB Lim Guan Eng on 18.7.2017, KOMTAR,George Town, Penang.

English Version 

Gerakan Practices Double-Standards In Suing Lim Guan Eng For Defamation

Gerakan President, YB Datuk Seri Mah Siew Keong’s recent confirmation on 14.7.2017 that “[Gerakan] will sue Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng” is a repeat of the irresponsible statement by YB Liang Teck Ming on 11.7.2017 that the Chief Minister has allegedly defamed Penang’s previous Gerakan-led administration.

While it is confirmed that the Chief Minister’s Office received the Notice of Action on 12.7.2017, we regrettably found no basis that warrants the Chief Minister to issue any semblance of apology within the given deadline or at any time. Instead, we readily welcome service of the cause papers by Gerakan’s legal team. What we can’t anticipate however, is the question of the long time needed to file a suit and the timing now just before the 14th General Elections.

If Gerakan found itself, for whatever reason, that they were defamed since 2012, one wonders why they even needed a 5-year gap before actually commencing action. If Gerakan needs to justify their action now just so that they ‘regain respect and dignity as well as putting things back in perspective’, why the long delay of 5 years in the first place?

Mah claims that Gerakan does not practice the culture of suing but that Gerakan is compelled to do so, is incorrect when the mass media in all languages give full coverage to Gerakan’s statements. This privilege is not granted to the Penang Chief Minister whose statements either do not get reported at all or a heavily edited version is published.

Mah and Gerakan also practice double standards. Their leaders (like Penang Gerakan Youth Acting Chairman Jason Loo) complained about the death of freedom of expression after being sued for defamation by Lim. However, no Gerakan leaders talk about death of freedom of expression when Mah or Gerakan sues Lim. Why is it okay for Gerakan to sue but not for Lim Guan Eng to sue? Such double-standards by Gerakan have been comprehensively and consistently rejected by the voters in the last 2 general elections in 2008 and 2013.

 

Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng will vigorously defend the defamation suit by Gerakan and welcomes the opportunity to prove in Court that the previous BN Penang state government sold 36 times more land than the present state government, but yet received less money.

RAJA SYARAFINA RAJA SHUIB

Special Legal Officer to the Penang Chief Minister

 

Mandarin Version

民政党在起诉林冠英一事上持双重标准

民政党主席拿督马袖强在2017年7月14日证实,“(民政党)将会起诉槟州首席部长林冠英”,此乃重复该党国会议员梁德明于2017年7月11日所作出的不负责任之声明,声称首长诽谤由民政党领导的前槟州政府。

首长办公室确认在2017年7月12日接获对方的律师通知信,但让我们感到遗憾的是,这当中并没有任何的基础能要求首长在相关的期限内发表任何形式的道歉。反之,我们虽然欢迎民政党的律师团发出律师信,然而,让我们无法预料的竟然是,民政党需要这么长的时间来提出诉讼,而这个时机,却恰恰落在第14届全国大选的前夕。

若民政党在2012年期间,无论基于什么原因,发现到他们自2012年起即被诽谤,民众必定很有兴趣想知道为什么他们会事隔5年之后,才真正采取实际的行动。若民政党如今需要为自己辩护以便能“重拾尊严及以正视听”,那为何他们需要拖延长达5年之久?

马袖强指出,民政党并没有起诉文化,但现在却被迫要这么做。如此说法是不正确的,因为民政党的文告与声明,都能获得各语文媒体的全面报道,而这个特权恰恰是槟州首席部长所无法享有的,他的文告和声明,不是不被报道,就是遭到窜改后才刊登。

马袖强与民政党皆持双重标准。他们的领袖(诸如槟州民青团代团长卢界燊)投诉,在遭林冠英起诉毁谤后,言论自由实际上已死。无论如何,当马袖强或民政党起诉林冠英时,却没有民政党的领袖谈及言论自由已死。为何只有民政党可以起诉,林冠英却不能?正是因为这样的双重标准,民政党在过去的两届全国普选,即2008年及2013年大选中,连续遭到选民全面的否决。

槟州首席部长林冠英将在法庭上对民政党的诽谤诉讼进行全力的捍卫,亦欢迎这个在庭上辩证的机会,他将在庭上证明前国阵政府售出比现任政府36倍多的土地,却收到更少的钱。

槟州首席部长特别官员(法律事务)拉惹莎拉菲娜

By | 2017-07-18T11:11:40+00:00 July 18th, 2017|Media Statements|Comments Off on Press Statement by Raja Syarafina Raja Shuib, Special Legal Officer to YAB Lim Guan Eng on 18.7.2017, KOMTAR,George Town, Penang.

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