PM Najib Seeks to Remove Parts of Tony Pua’s Statement of Defence in Defamation Suit

KUALA LUMPUR: Datuk Seri Najib Razak is seeking to remove parts of the statement of defence of Petaling Jaya Utara member of parliament Tony Pua Kiam Wee referring to 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) in the Prime Minister’s defamation suit against him. In the High Court yesterday, Najib’s counsel Datuk Mohd Hafarizam Harun sought to remove from the statement of defence certain paragraphs and exhibits referring to write-ups and the Companies Commission of Malaysia(CCM) document search result on 1MDB.

Hafarizam told judicial commissioner Datuk Roslan Abu Bakar that the impugned statements amounted to hearsay as their contents were not within Pua’s direct and personal knowledge.   Hafarizam argued that the evidence must be corroborated by affidavits (supporting court documents) by a CCM official and the writers of the articles.   Among the articles that Pua was relying on were ones originating from online blog reports on 1MDB.   Hafarizam said the evidence must not be hearsay as they were also being relied on by Pua in a separate bid to strike out Najib’s suit, which if allowed (striking-out bid) would serve as “final judgment” on the whole matter.

Pua’s lawyer Gobind Singh Deo replied that his client’s evidence was still admissible because the CCM documents were official search results, and the printed articles were sufficient to back Pua’s defence, among others.   Roslan set May 5 for decision on Najib’s application to remove the disputed material from Pua’s defence.

Najib, who is also Barisan Nasional (BN) president, is suing Pua and co-defendant Chan Chee Kong – the owner of online portal Mediarakyat.net – over Pua’s remark made in a speech at a DAP fundraising dinner on Nov 3, 2014.   A recording of the speech by Pua – who was the main speaker at the event – was allegedly uploaded by Chan and/or his agents onto the Mediarakyat website and online video-sharing portal Youtube.   The recording was alleged to be subsequently shared by Pua and/or his agents on his Facebook account and by Chan and/or his agents on the Mediarakyat Facebook account

Source : Najib seeks to remove parts of Tony Pua’s statement of defence in defamation suit