Court strikes out Dr M’s bid in suit against Anwar

SHAH ALAM: The High Court here has dismissed an application by Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad to obtain certain documents that purportedly support his RM150mil defamation lawsuit against Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.

Lawyer Alliff Benjamin Suhaimi, representing Anwar, when contacted by Bernama, said Judicial Commissioner Zaharah Hussain dismissed Dr Mahathir’s application on the grounds that the document requested was not specifically referred to in the applicant’s (Dr Mahathir) statement of defence.

What was referred to in the defence was an event or transaction in the past, he said, adding that the court dismissed Dr Mahathir’s application with costs of RM2,000.

He said the court set Nov 3 for case management for both parties to notify it of other interlocutory applications, if any.

When contacted, Muhammad Rafique Rashid Ali, representing Dr Mahathir, confirmed the decision by the court yesterday.

He said his client wanted Anwar, among other things, to produce the documents he referred to in his amended statement of defence regarding the alleged bailout of Konsortium Perkapalan Bhd by PETRONAS and Perbadanan Perkapalan Malaysia International in 1997.

Dr Mahathir filed the lawsuit against Anwar on May 3 over the latter’s speech at an event dubbed Kongres Nasional Khas Malaysia Madani: Pelaksanaan Sebuah Idealisme at the Melawati Stadium in Shah Alam on March 18.

The former prime minister claimed that Anwar had delivered a speech which contained several defamatory statements that aimed to tarnish his reputation.

Dr Mahathir said this included statements that the plaintiff had amassed wealth for himself, his children and family members, and had given special treatment or priority to high-ranking individuals.

The former two-time prime minister is seeking RM50mil in general damages and RM100mil in exemplary damages, as well as an apology and an order for the defendant to immediately retract all the defamatory remarks.

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