KUALA LUMPUR: PKR vice-president Tian Chua denied having issued words which defamed Umno on the Sulu gunmen intrusion in Lahad Datu.
This was stated in his defence statement which was submitted to the High Court here on Tuesday.
He claimed that the statement was fair comment and made on an occasion of qualified privilege as a member of parliament and in public interest.
Justice Rosilah Yop, who heard the case in chambers, set May 13 for case management.
On April 11, Umno executive secretary Datuk Ab Rauf Yusoh filed a defamation suit against Tian Chua and two others over an article posted on KeadilanDaily.com. in connection with the Lahad Datu intrusion.
Ab Rauf named KeadilanDaily.com editor Fazallah Pit and the writer of the article, Aisha Geoffrey, as defendants.
Ab Rauf alleged that Tian Chua had made disparaging statements during an interview by a portal journalist which were posted through an article, "Insiden tembakan di Lahad Datu konspirasi terancang Umno" (Shooting incident in Lahad Datu an Umno orchestrated conspiracy), by KeadilanDaily on March 1.
He is seeking general, aggravated and exemplary damages, as well as a written apology from the defendants which has to be published in all newspapers, and other relief deemed fit by the court. - Bernama